A little while ago, I wrote a post of mini reviews on 3 fantasy books I loved yet never reviewed. There are quite a few books I read in 2015 yet hadn’t gotten around to reviewing. In the same aspect, I have 3 non-fiction books I read yet never reviewed: Love, Tanya, The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, and A Stolen Life.
A Stolen Life by Jaycee Dugard
Published: July 12th 2011 by Simon & Schuster
Rating: 3.5/5 stars
Synopsis: In the summer of 1991 I was a normal kid. I did normal things. I had friends and a mother who loved me. I was just like you. Until the day my life was stolen. For eighteen years I was a prisoner. I was an object for someone to use and abuse. For eighteen years I was not allowed to speak my own name. I became a mother and was forced to be a sister. For eighteen years I survived an impossible situation. On August 26, 2009, I took my name back. My name is Jaycee Lee Dugard. I don’t think of myself as a victim. I survived. A Stolen Life is my story—in my own words, in my own way, exactly as I remember it.
This is a tough book. If you read the synopsis, you’ll know that it’s an auto-biography of Jaycee who has kidnapped and abused when she was around 11 (I think). I’m not 100% sure she was 11, but it won’t be far off. This story is heartbreaking. Knowing that stuff like this happens to children all over the world horrifies me. It’s also told in a very interesting manner. When you read it, it’s told from like the perspective of an 11 year old. The entire time you’re reading this, you really feel like that little girl is talking to you. It’s both upsetting and interesting. I listened to the audio book of this, which increases the effect even more.
I have to admit that I was confused at times. I couldn’t truly keep track of her age. I guess that’s because she skipped over a lot of the abuse and such so you only get a glimpse of the past 18 years. Don’t get me wrong, I completely understand that. It’s up to her to decide how much she’ll tell the world. She’s been through enough, I think we can all grant her privacy.
Lastly, I just want to say that the audio book contained over more than an hour’s worth talk about cats. I’m not kidding.
The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo
Published: December 27th 2010
Rating: 3/5 stars
Synopsis: Despite constant efforts to declutter your home, do papers still accumulate like snowdrifts and clothes pile up like a tangled mess of noodles? Japanese cleaning consultant Marie Kondo takes tidying to a whole new level, promising that if you properly simplify and organize your home once, you’ll never have to do it again. Most methods advocate a room-by-room or little-by-little approach, which doom you to pick away at your piles of stuff forever. The KonMari Method, with its revolutionary category-by-category system, leads to lasting results. In fact, none of Kondo’s clients have lapsed (and she still has a three-month waiting list).
I’m kind of on the fence about this book. I guess you could say I’m in the middle of two emotions: I didn’t love it as most people did, but I didn’t hate it either.
First of all, this book raises some important issues in everyone’s life. The mess. No matter how often you clean, clutter always forms. And we tend to have way too much stuff. After I read this, I listened to a podcast about de-cluttering, then I saw Anna’s (Vivianna Does Makeup on YouTube) video on a capsule wardrobe. All this combined made me itch for some de-cluttering. I went through all my clothes, shoes, purses and even books and took out everything I don’t use. Books I didn’t like or won’t read, clothes I don’t wear or don’t fit, shoes that are old and so on. So I guess this book did inspire me to go through my possessions.
However, I don’t agree on her point about nostalgic items. Okay, maybe you won’t need all these family pictures or albums. But that doesn’t mean you should get rid of them either. Also, I was a bit weirded out at times. The day I start talking to my purse at the end of the day to thank it for carrying my stuff, is the day I’ll go to the doctor for a check up.
So in short, I thought this was interesting -and it definitely inspired me to cull my stuff. But I definitely don’t agree with her on everything.
Love, Tanya by Tanya Burr
Published: January 29th 2015 by Penguin Random House UK
Rating: 3.5/5 stars
Synopsis: Hi everyone and welcome to Love, Tanya! This book is really close to my heart, because it’s inspired by my journey to becoming confident and feeling happy about who I am. I wanted to write a book to share the things I’ve learnt with you – to reveal my top tips on fashion, beauty, love, friendship, YouTube… and loads more! Plus, there is room for you to list your own hopes and dreams alongside mine – so get creative and get involved! I’d love it if this book became a keepsake you can turn to whenever you need some guidance or a little pick me up. I hope you enjoy it! Love, Tanya
I never thought I’d pick this up, but when I saw it at a charity shop for €3 I figured I’d give it a go. Tanya Burr was one of the first beauty YouTubers I subscribed to, and while I am no longer a subscriber, I do appreciate what she taught me.
This book is divided into several parts: early life, skincare, makeup, hair and nails, fashion, love, baking, confidence and happiness, being healthy and so on. I thought it was very interesting. It was nice to read a bit more about her life, aside from the YouTube aspect. I’ll definitely try out some of her baking recipes, and the juices she mentioned. What I loved most is the parts about confidence and body image. I think, if you have so many subscribers of which many are young girls, it’s important to talk about it.
During the book, she made several lists and allowed you a page to write you own as well. Like, your favorite childhood memories. Or your travel plans.
Have you read any of these books? If you have, what did you think of them? If you haven’t, do you read non-fiction at times -or do you stay away from the genre?