So, another month has passed! Thanks SO much for all the support you’ve given me for my blog so far! I’ve already had over 50 visitors from 11 countries visit my blog since I’ve started it, and for that I am very grateful! 👼
Anyway, here are the books I’ve read since my last post on books, Books I’ve Read This Month – January 2017! If you’d like a more-than-monthly update on what I’m reading and what I plan to read next, then check out my 50 Book Pledge page! I must say, I have thoroughly enjoyed every single book I have read this month, hence the fact that I haven’t given a single one a rating of less than 5 stars! 💖
I have had some mock exams at school this month, so studying has become more of a priority over everything else than usual, hence the fact that I haven’t read as many books this month as I sometimes do. Anyways, hope you enjoy…
#8: Finding Audrey by Sophie Kinsella
A sensitive and realistic but humorous book about family relations about mental health. It centres around the main character, Audrey, who suffers from a form of social anxiety after an awful event at school and insists on staying at home, until she meets her brother’s friend, Linus…
Thoroughly recommend if you’d like more insight into what suffering with a mental health problem is like, or if you’d simply just like another book to read!
#9: Every Day by David Levithan
This is a really cleverly-written book about a person, simply called A, who wakes up every morning in a different person’s body than the day before, but people who areal the same age as he is. Inevitably A builds up emotional connections with certain people, and this book is about how relationships are maintained despite this difficulty. It is an extremely imaginative way to portray how different people see the world, and how different people live their lives, so a fundamental theme to Every Day is diversity.
I recommend this to people who would like read a book which is a little different to usual YA fiction, in that it is essentially centred wound the same person, but sort of not…
#10: War Horse by Michael Morpurgo
A lovely book about a very special horse, Joey, who is used living his life in a quiet, remote village, far from the rest of the world with his best human friend Albert, but is called to be a working, war horse on the front line after WWI breaks out. This is a sensitive portrayal about what life is like fighting on the front line in a war, and the role that both animals and humans play in it, and how wars can affect people and animals so differently. It really made me appreciate how important animals can be in wars, and this was particularly the case in WWI, and how little control they had over what happened to them, as they were almost solely reliant on humans. I also hadn’t realised how not-hostile the two sides were sometimes to one another, as even the Germans showed occasional affection to Joey!
Definitely recommend to people who love reading novels about animals, and history.
#11: Gay Berlin by Robert Beachy 🇩🇪
A very informative, analytical book about the (relatively) early days for the LGBTQ+ community, and how surprisingly tolerant Germany was of them before the time of the Nazis.
Berlin was such a pioneering place, much ahead of its time in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. For example, they were not only the first city in the world to tolerate LGBTQ+ subcultures (with their police knowing about their many Schwulenlokale – gay bars), but also had the world’s first electric streetcars as early as the 1880s, and was considered to be one of the most hygienic cities of Europe of its time, streets ahead of other well-developed western cities such as London, New York and Paris. It was even the first to use mugshots to identify criminals.
Berlin during this time became known as the gay capital of the world, and was the birthplace of the first ever gay journal (der Eigene), the first ever homosexual rights organisation (SHC – Scientific Humanitarian Committee), the first institute for sexual science (der Institut für Sexualwissenschaft) and the first ever sex-reassignment surgery.
So, what went wrong? Well, apart from the Nazis rioting the Institut für Sexualwissenschaft and destroying lots of important documents on the emancipation of the LGBTQ+ community, during the Great Depression of 1929 following the New York Wall Street Crash (die Börsenkrise), many of its former supporters could no longer afford to support it, nor buy the previously successful gay periodicals. Also, with a threat of Nazi repression, many of the key players (some of whom were also Jewish) moved out of Germany to escape this, Magnus Hirschfeld being a good example of this. Therefore, such an active LGBTQ+ presence in such an important city in Germany such as Berlin could no longer thrive nearly as much under these conditions of Nazi Germany.
I would definitely recommend this book for anyone who would like to learn more about LGBTQ+ history, or the history of Germany (particularly the Weimar period), or simply would like something different to read – I was recommended by my German teacher to read this, as we are learning about the Weimar Period as part of our A Level course – as you can probably tell, I have got quite into this book and German history now fascinates me more than ever before!
Anyway, that’s all for what I’ve read this month, folks! Hope you enjoyed reading this nonetheless! I will be doing a special series of blog posts for Lent this year every Sunday, and I will try to do my regular posts every Friday as well as this (I’ll see how it goes)! My first one will be this Sunday – all about my Christian faith and why I’m becoming a vegan for Lent (apart from to be more healthy!) – see you then 👋