Book Review: I’m the king of the castle

I’m the king of the castle by Susan Hill

“I didn’t want you to come here”

This book was suggested to me by an English teacher I met at Waterloo station a few months ago (I like talking to strangers now idk) and she warned me that it was a pretty messed up book…SHE WAS RIGHT!
This book has taken my belief that all kids are Satan soldiers and ramped it up by about 1000.
Set in a decrepit Manor House called ‘Warings’ it starts with Edmund Hooper, A very posh and entitled child who is annoyed because his dad has hired a woman to become a housekeeper in their newly inherited mouldy Victorian manor (great!), and she is bringing her son, Charles Kingshaw to live at Warings with them. And from this moment it’s just hell, literally anxiety triggering bullying from both Hooper and Kingshaw. They’re both just bloody awful.
This book does have an important message though. Each person living in Warings does not project love and has never really experienced love, which is where all the chaos comes from. But still…this book is mental (I mean it has come from the mind that created ‘the woman in black’ so…).
Susan Hill’s writing is genius. Every sentence is devoid of love or affection and each character danced around the subject of love, or declines any chance at being kind to one another, even Hooper’s dad and Kingshaw’s mum!!

The never ending rivalry between both boys is a twisted view at childhood bullying and it honestly gave me anxiety a few times! The mind games Hooper plays are just psychotic. And Kingshaw is hopelessly lost amongst trying to seem tough and indifferent to each jab from Hooper.
Despite Kingshaw being the victim in this book I couldn’t help but feel sympathy for Hooper. Both boys were starved of affection and attention which birthed evil child demons within both of them, and we all know evil child demons, whether metaphorical or physical, are the worst kind.

Also, another thing that worries me is that this book is on school curriculums?! The English teacher who recommended it to me was saying how worried she was that children were reading this at school! (I mean I had to read lord of the flies and holes so I guess it’s not too messed up, but still! What’s wrong in reading children Shakespeare…or Dickens)
I guess I don’t need to say why I think y’all should read this book cause you might have already read it, in which case, I’m sorry I had to make you re-live the trauma!! But it’s a worth a read to remind you how love is important…and if you can, teach kids not to be evil to others and they won’t have fatal accidents or grow up to be weirdos!

Also, Susan Hill’s writing is totally worth a read!!

Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter! I’d love to hear other people’s opinions on the books I review!
Where to buy this book: 







Book Review: The Circle

The Circle by Dave Eggers

I’m gonna be honest…I read this book SO QUICKLY in anticipation for the movie…and I’m still VERY confused and slightly let down by the story!!

OK so the story is based around the main character: Mae Holland who is a new employee at the technology power house ‘THE CIRCLE’, and goes from ‘guppy’ to member of the top forty most popular/influential people within the company.

At first, the circle sounds like the ULITMATE business to work for! Mae is given access to the best technology (new phones, laptops, tablets) free healthcare, all that good stuff! But as time goes by, the reader discovers that The circle isn’t all as it seems. Over enthusiastic co workers and prying eyes create a dystopian atmosphere around Mae as she happily walks into the trap that is created within the maze of this ‘all inclusive’ big brother style business.

I was so into this story in the first half of the book, it was creepily similar to the world we live in today (technology taking over our lives, everyone knowing everything about us because of social media and basically our online identities taking over and becoming intertwined). And Mae’s complete compliance with it all made me want to climb into the book and give her a good shake to make her see the complete creepiness of it all!!

But descending into the second half the plot became far too chaotic!! And not in a good way (in my opinion!).

I don’t feel like it was rushed, but the way it was written I just feel like the author had no idea how to end it with the intended impact, considering the strong plot and relatable sub plots, the second half was a complete shift in tone, which is a shame, cause I was so hyped in anticipation for the film!

BUT I wouldn’t discourage anyone from reading ‘the circle’ especially if you’re a fan of the dystopian genre.

And my only negative comment about the film is that John Boyega wasn’t given more screen time!!

So if I had to score this book out of ten, I would probably give it a six. It’s the first book I’ve read from Dave Eggers, so perhaps it’s just writings style, I’m definitely not put off and I will read more from him. But this book, unfortunately, did not live up to my expectations.

Where to buy this book:






Book Details:

  • Paperback: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin; 01 edition (24 April 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 024114650X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0241146507
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.8 x 19.8 cm

Book Review: The Die-Fi Experiment

The Die-Fi Experiment by M.R. Tapia

“I believe that the abominable deterioration of ethical standards stems primarily from the mechanization and depersonalization of our lives, a disastrous byproduct of science and technology. Nostra culpa!” – Albert Einstein

A honeymoon gone wrong? A sick and twisted game show? DEATH? Social media ruining EVERYTHING?! oh…and GORE!! ….these are a few of my favourite things!!

In all seriousness though, my intro to this book review is a basic description of what The Die-Fi Experiment is all about! This book has to have been the goriest thing I’ve ever read! I’ve seen my fair share of horror films, the Saw franchise, ‘Would you Rather’ and ‘Hostel’ but this book throws every gory film I’ve ever seen out of the water!

I applaud M.R. Tapia to be able to create such gory descriptions that literally made me turn away from the page and wince, trying not to imagine myself experience such pain!! but not only did Tapia nail the gore and horror but the underlying message beneath the blood and guts.

The Die-Fi Experiment is a game show streamed through the internet and watched by thousands. The protagonists’ pain being spurred on by the faceless watchers behind a screen. This book is an extreme way of showing how social media and the internet, in general, can become dangerous when put into the wrong hands…or if humans become too revolved around social media.

Tapia’s use of ironic hashtags is something I absolutely loved throughout this book!! something horrifying would be going on, and to sum it up for the internet there’d be a hashtag at the end, for example:


(obvs you’ll have to read the book for the irony to make any sense! so go read it!!!)

Overall despite feeling very sick at some parts in this book due to the extreme gore, I found it very entertaining! it made you understand the characters as the story progressed and the ending just made you wish they’d never went on their honeymoon!!

Also at the end of The Die-Fi Experiment, there is an excerpt from Tapia’s upcoming and debut novel which comes out on the 2nd November of this year!!! it’s called ‘Sugar Skull’ and the excerpt has me excited for its release!

Purchase the Die- Fi Experiment on Amazon


Book Review: The Things That Grow With Us

The Things That Grow With Us by Jordan Anderson


“Terra autem erat inanis et vacua, et tenebræ erant super faciem abyssi…” – Genesis 1:2
   (But the earth was empty and unoccupied, and darknesses were over the face of the abyss)

Being a complete stranger to the horror genre, This collection of short stories is the spookiest, most hair raising grouping of tales I’ve ever read! Jordan Anderson’s eclectic stories explore all of life’s best horror genres and sink them into an eery, treacle like atmosphere.

The seven stories take you on a journey to outer space, where there are horrifying things awaiting, to a place of folklore, and mutations against prejudice. Anderson has done a perfect job of tackling each story with a strong and sharpened eye for the gory and the horrific.

Seeing the world through each protagonist’s eyes shows the reader a world of terrifying possibilties, and the slow descent into that terror is what makes Anderson’s collection of stories grow on you! (sorry about the pun…i had to do it!)

Full of emotion and character’s that mean something, there is more to these tales than just the novelty splat of blood and spooky ghosts that you’d expect from horror, and the impeccably written plot to each one stretches your mind to the capability of these worlds and true terror found within humans.

Now, let’s talk about my favourite parts!! I LOVE aliens, so the very first short story in this collection got my engines revving!! I was so into the story and I was getting vibes that if it were a film, James Cameron would be directing it!

I love Anderson’s writing style, it’s slow and descriptive yet it grabs your attention with its eerie build and plotting.  And just as it began, this collection ended with a bang! the last story was like ‘the creepy cabin in the woods’  horror plot but with an amazing storyline, and a human heartbeat!

Now, I’d talk at length about each and every story in this collection but I’d rather you all read it for yourselves!! I hate to be the spoiler alert review blog! go and read The Things That Grow With Us!

Book Review: The Muse

The Muse by Jessie Burton


If that opening sentence didn’t get you interested in reading this book, then let me give you the low down….

This book is based around two main characters who live in different eras.

We have Odelle Bastien, who, in 1967 starts a typist job for the Skelton Gallery in London.

We also have Olive Schloss, who, in 1936, is living with her father (successful art dealer) and her mother (fabulously gorgeous, but little bit damaged) in an picturesque finca in rural spain.

How do these two people correlate?


Odelle’s new job throws her into the world of the arts. Being a writer herself, she is pushed by her new boss Marjorie Quick to pursue her writing dreams, and Odelle quickly finds her own space in the world after five years of finding her feet in the smoggy city of london, which is a complete contrast from Trinidad, her original home. Now, whilst working for this gallery, Odelle meets Lawrie Scott, a fine, handsome stranger who just so happens to have inherited a VERY mysterious painting. Marjorie Quick, Odelle’s boss (who is also just as mysterious as the painting) claims this painting is attached to Isaac Robles, a SPANISH painter.

(if i could insert dramatic sound fx into this review right now, I WOULD)

SO, this is where Olive Schloss enters into the story. She herself is a budding artist, she has insane painting skills, which are overlooked by her ‘old fashioned’ dad, who doesn’t believe in his daughter’s ability to be a successful artist. THEN THE ROBLES APPEAR. We have Isaac Robles, a rebel without a cause, a daring young socialist with a mucho feugo presence (sorry i’m getting carried away), and his sister Teresa who becomes the Schlosse’s maid, secret keeper, and all round confidant. Isaac ignites Olive, who not only falls madly and deeply for him, but has a hunger to paint due to his presence (it is very mucho fuego!!). Entwined within passion, the growing tension of a country at war with itself and the natural flaws of humans, Olive’s world changes from the moment the Robles are introduced to her.

These two eras are slotted together perfectly as you read on. Not only does Odelle make discoveries about the thirty year old painting, but about everything she has come to know as her world.

And like I said in the dramatic first sentence of this review….this book BLEW MY MIND. It’s plot is insane and perfect. It’s one of those books that tricks you and then once you’ve finished it you just sit in a dark corner for a few days crying (a bit OTT but you get where i’m coming from).

And for anyone who has read Jessie Burton’s first book ‘the miniaturist’ the two cannot be compared. They are both literary masterpieces (in my humble, yet fabulous opinion) for completely different reasons!!

Why I think you should read this book:

  1. The characters! oh wow, the way Jessie Burton has written each character is just awe-inspiring, they each have flaws, talents and secrets that are all meticulously intertwined within the story.
  2. the changes of eras is a breath of fresh air. Just as the story in London is getting too pressurised, you’re transported to rural Spain, where there is a whole other ball game of drama to sink your teeth into!
  3. The unquestionable trust put into Jessie Burton and her writing. The research and the pure talent that has gone into creating this story is utterly amazing.
  4. THE PLOT. It blew my mind for heaven’s sake!
  5. You will genuinely regret not reading this book…genuinely…click on a link below and treat yourself to it….and then message me so we can freak out together about it!!

Where to buy this book:







Book Details:

  • Hardcover: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Picador; Main Market Ed. edition (30 Jun. 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 144725094X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1447250944

Book Review: Strange Medicine

Strange Medicine by Mike Russell

Mike Russell is back to scramble your brains!! this time with tiny little stories…little pills, if you will, that are truly, truly, truly strange.

Reading this collection of short stories is very much like untying yourself from this world and losing sense of gravity, they all make enough sense to be human, but they mainly twist you upside down and leave you stuck to the ceiling with a confusing feeling in your stomach.

within 141 pages, Mike Russell tells 8 stories that all seem to have their own meaning, I feel that if you decipher them enough they are somewhat a cautionary tale…of what? maybe to step out of the normality? the meaning of the subject is in the eye of the beholder.

What I love about Russell’s writing is how detached it is. The characters describe objects to every inch/measurement, and they converse with a soulless eery conviction which adds to the dystopian, ‘strange-ness’ to the short stories. I feel that the lack of context when it comes to characters and their backstories etc. is intentional, how can something be strange if we know every single detail about it?!

I’m not going to explain every short story in extreme detail, because that would ruin the fun for you!! these stories will shake you up and most likely make you stare at a wall for few minutes thinking ‘what is even real anymore??’ 

So now you’ve read this strange review….go and read Mike Russell’s ‘Strange Medicine’!! I believe no prescription is necessary *wink wink*

Want more strange reads? head on over to strangebooks and take a look at Mike Russell’s other books!! (check out my review for Strungballs here)

Also big shout out to Mike Russell himself for introducing me to Dystopian genre!! i’m making my way through the top classics!! (if anyone feels like sending me Dystopian book recommendations then find me on twitter, or email me!!)

Where to buy this book:


Book Details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1 edition (5 May 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1522945385
  • ISBN-13: 978-1522945383

‘A book that you’ve read more than 3 times’ – Child 44 by Tom Rob Smith

I have read this book a total of five times…I just love it.


Tom Rob Smith is an absolute genius, and the Child 44 book series, to me, is the best thriller series out there.


Why do I love it so much?
From the characters, to the beginning that only makes sense until you’ve read every page, it’s faultless in my eyes.
I’m a big fan of thriller books and I honestly thought I was going to hate this book. It’s set in the Stalin era of the soviet union which I thought was going to wind me up and make me sad, and it did, but in a way that added a frosty cut to each mystery, and a perfect sense of urgency to the story (I honestly nearly had a panic attack whilst reading some of the chapters, it’s that tense!)


It’s also based on a true story: the killings of  Andrei Chikatilo. This fragment of truth adds a page turning fixation within the plot.


And finally the main reason I love this book, the characters!


The main character, Leo, an MGB officer, and at first, a very cold character. But this book is a very bumpy ride for him (bless him). I have a real soft spot for Leo, mainly because he’s so relatable! (Weird, right? Being able to relate to an MGB officer) but as you get further into the book you see his utter need for redemption, to be loved and to solve this case, despite having the odds stacked against him.


And then there is Raisa!! The most amazing, strong female character. As Leo’s wife, the book conveys a series of emotions she feels towards him (anger, fear, hopelessness) but towards the end there is LOVE, ahhh,  I love a good love story that bites back. She’s not just there for the love story, no no no!! She’s just as strong at fighting the odds, her formidable and clever thinking creates an amazing element to this book!!


And of course it is the first book to a nail biting and thrilling series!
Child 44
The Secret Speech
Agent 6


I would really love for everyone to give this book a chance! Tom Rob Smith has a writing talent that many could only dream for.
Also, don’t forget that Child 44 has been made into a pretty awesome film featuring Tom Hardy and Noomi Rapace!!


Where to buy this book:


Book details:

  • Paperback: 484 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK; Reissue edition (28 April 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0857204084
  • ISBN-13: 978-0857204080

‘The Wicked Boy’ – Best Book I Read Last Year

The first question i’ve chosen is: ‘Best book you read last year’ and i’ve chosen ‘The Wicked Boy’ by Kate Summerscale.


This was my favourite book last year for many reasons (here we go!)


As a lover of history, thrillers and anything slightly macabre and morbid, this book grabbed me the moment I read the description. What’s even more macabre and morbid is that it’s a true story!


Victorian London is that moment in history where everything was just creepy. All things happening under a blanket of darkness, a moment that’s just close enough to seem familiar, but so far back everything is unknown.


And this book tells the tale of a child growing up in that fog…and killing his mum (that’s not a spoiler, that’s the whole point of this book!)


Kate Summerscale follows Robert Coombes and his brother Nattie around London after the deed is done. It shows how children’s imagination can make almost anything disappear as they live unfettered by apron strings.
But Summerscale also records the fall out, the discovery of the tragic killing, and the bizarre witnessing of a thirteen year old stood accused of murder in front of judge and jury.


What I loved most about this book is the portrayal of Robert, through records and discovering his path through life, Summerscale has uncovered the truth that he was just a human, confused and mentally ill as a child, but still human. His adult life is described in this book with amazing detail and I couldn’t help but feel relief and almost happy for Robert as I turned the last page of the book.


Why I think you should read this book:

  1. The research done to create this timeline is phenomenal, newspaper articles and police statements, even records of Robert as he grew into adulthood. No stone is left unturned
  2.  That fascination for the weird and dark parts of life and history that we all have within
    us is definitely satisfied. I did indeed gasp and knit my brow as I read about the murder and concealment of the body (how did they continue to live in that house?! They were only children!! *gasp*)
  4. The end of the book tells you what happened to Robert post-murdering his mother. Which is INTERESTING!
  5.  Old newspaper articles, pictures and illustrations are referenced inside the book which show how villainous Robert was portrayed to be, and how this story captivated the city.


Where to buy this book:





Book Details:

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing; First Edition edition (29 April 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1408851148
  • ISBN-13: 978-1408851142


Hello! I’m Chloe! This is the place where I’ll be posting my book reviews/ travel posts and basically reviews of things I love (theatre, movies, museums etc.)

OK so I find the beginning of anything really awkward, so I’ve found this ’30 day book challenge’ and I’m basically going to use these questions as a start to my reviews/get to know me thing!!

Here are the questions:

1. Best book you read last year

2.A book you’ve read more than 3 times

3.Your favourite series

4.Favourite book of your favourite series

5.A book that makes you happy

6.A book that makes you sad

7.A book that makes you laugh

8.Most overrated book

9.A book you thought you wouldn’t like but ended up loving

10.A book that reminds you of home

11.A book you hated

12.A book you love but hate at the same time

13.Your favourite writer

14.Book turned into a movie and completely desecrated

15.Favourite male character

16.Favourite female character

17.Favourite quote from your favourite book

18.A book that disappointed you

19.Favourite book that turned into a movie

20.Favourite romance book

21.The first novel you remember reading

22.A book that makes you cry

23.A book you wanted to read for a long time but still haven’t

24.A book that you wish more people would’ve read

25.A character who you can relate to the most

26.A book that changed your opinion about something

27.The most surprising plot twist or ending

28.Favourite title of a book

29.A book everyone hated but you liked

30.Your favourite book of all time

So hello, bonjour, hola, HEY follow me on here and twitter… Or Instagram, we can talk about stuff!!!