Freedom Fridays

This week, as Harry chirpily said ‘goodbye Mummy’ and I bolted out the door, I have decided to have a lazy at home day. Rightfully so after a week of sleep training. I intend to firmly park my bum on the sofa, heating on, tea in hand, and indulge in some reading.

My new years resolution of sorts, was to read more. This was a vague attempt to get me off the social media spiral of FB-Instgram-Twitter-repeat whilst Harry plays with his trains and to get my brain working. I bought a notebook, downloaded the POPSUGAR reading challenge and delved in to a myriad of genres and authors. Currently at thirty-eight of the forty books suggested, I’ve just got to tick off ‘a book with an item of clothing or accessory on the cover’ and ‘a re-read of a favourite book.’ Surely I should get a prize at the end (logging on to Publisher to make a certificate for myself).

So today’s Freedom Friday three are going to be recent books that I have indulged in. You couldn’t get more different tomes so hopefully there’s something in there for everyone!

  1. The Witchfinder’s Sister – By Beth Underdown

I am not a historical fiction fan by rights but half the fun of the POPSUGAR challenge is to test your boundaries.

Living in Essex, where the book is set – albeit in the 1600’s, I found the historical element fascinating. It tells the tale of of Alice, sister to Matthew Hopkins – the self-labelled Witchfinder General. He was responsible for the execution of approximately two-hundred witches across East Anglia.

Her view, as a pregnant widow, and her insight in to her brother’s early life brings to life the terrifying momentum with which her brother assumes a horrific power to test and try women as witches. That this authority is based on rumour and gossip makes it truly terrifying.

A page-turner from start to finish.

‘A book with a plant in the title or on the cover.’ Tick. I was a massive fan of ‘Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine’ by Gail Honeyman. Haywood’s debut novel is touching, quirky and leaves you with a similar warm, fuzz to the former.

I had one thing in in common with the protagonist but to share that would be to give a spoiler that you know is coming but you just want to revel in the reveal. Otherwise, her spiky, prickly persona was altogether opposite but so compelling.

You feel like you are taken on her humorous journey of growth and despite the barriers she puts in the way of getting close to people, you are truly rooting for her (no pun intended).

This was a complete gem.

Where do I even begin. It ticks off number thirty-nine on my list. It teaches me the nuances of Scottish dialect. Should I ever need an illegal kidney-transplant, it gives me an insight into the murky world of organ-harvesting.

Note to self: do not read on the tube where people are looking over your shoulder! As with Trainspotting, Filth and his other works, it is brutal, graphic and downright wrong in places.

Yet despite the gloom and grime, the characters come to life once again. Revisiting Sick-Boy, Renton, Spud and Begbie as middle-aged men is like ‘Friends Reunited’ with a morbid fascination.

I’ve not finished this one yet but intrigued to know who is wearing ‘The Dead Man’s Trousers.

I will be bereft once the challenge is finished. I would LOVE any great book suggestions to keep me ticking over till POPSUGAR release the 2020 challenge. Please post me some great reads in the comments!

Time for a heating boost, another cuppa and a cheeky omelette – then back to my books. Have a fab weekend all!



  1. Ooooo hold me back…..

    You HAVE to try Blood Orange by Harriet Tyce

    The Binding by Bridget Collins still has me thinking

    I loved The Hoarder by Jess Kidd, she’s my new favourite author

    Wild card – A Boy and his Dog at the End of the World by C.A. Fletcher, enthralling

    Loving the blog Cuz, I look forward to each post xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So glad you enjoyed it. I always get nervous recommending books but I think we’ve similar tastes. I’ve got such a backlog. Still on the Emma Donoghue one as writing is taking up all my time. Still need to get on to your list!


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