September in my house always went back to school. There’s simply no escaping it when both your parents are teachers.
So, September seems like the perfect month to take this school-themed tag created by the wonderful Victoria from What Victoria Read. It’s separated into questions about the time of day during school, and also some about the subjects you studied.
For this tag, I’ll only be answering questions about the subjects I sat for my Leaving Certificate, the end of school exams in Ireland.
Times of Day
First bell: Tell us about the book that first got you into reading!
The one that started it all was Matilda by Roald Dahl. It’s the first book I ever remember finishing all by myself. It will always hold a very special place in my heart as the book that made me a reader.
Break time: Which book have you most recently had to take a break from or DNF?
I’ve had to lay a few books to the side recently as I went through a REALLY bad slump. Most recently, I took a break from Asking for a Friend by Andi Osho. I think it was just a right book at the wrong time situation.
Lunch time: Tell us about your favourite book that features food!
Earlier this year I read With the Fire On High by Elizabeth Acevedo. The main character, Emoni, is a trainee chef. The book is full of beautiful and tempting descriptions of the meals she cooks, as well as what she experiences on a fortnight long trip to Spain. Never read this book while you’re hungry.
Final bell: Which book have you most recently finished reading?
I finished The Dating Playbook by Farrah Rochon. It was a fantastic romance read, and I highly recommend the series so far.
Homework: What was the last non-fiction book you read and enjoyed?
Did Ye Hear Mammy Died? by Séamas O Reilly is a memoir by Séamas, telling of the passing of his mother and how life continued for Séamas, his father, and his 10 siblings. It’s equal parts hilarious and heartbreaking.
Staff room: Tell us about a book you go to when you need to take a breath!
If I find life is getting a little too much, I always go back to The Babysitters Club. There’s always a story of theirs I can sink into.
English: Tell us about one book you studied at school AND recommend one book you would like to add to the curriculum!
For my single text I studied Hamlet by William Shakespeare. I absolutely loved it, and I would love to re-read it some day without the pressure of having to answer an essay question about it.
If I could choose a book to go on the curriculum, I’d nominate Asking For It by Louise O’Neill. It definitely raises a lot of conversations about consent and sexual assault.
Maths: How do you rate your books?
This year I started using the CAWPILE system to rate the books I’ve read. Now the only books I don’t rate are non fiction. I find it a little off to rate a book about someone’s actual life.
Geography: Describe a book that had a strong sense of place or great world building.
If you’re going to create a fictional world based on an actual country, you really have to blow it out of the water. Luckily, American Royals by Katharine McGee did. I was fully ready to believe America was a monarchy preparing for its first queen regnant.
PE: Show us the biggest book on your TBR!
At the moment, the biggest book on my TBR is Who’s That Girl? by Mhairi McFarlane. It comes it at a whopping 535 pages – pretty big for contemporary romance, huh?
Modern Foreign Languages: Recommend a translated book you enjoyed!
I really loved Before the Coffee Gets Cold by Toshikazu Kawaguchi. I’m not a huge sci-fi reader but this was such an amazing book. I have a copy of the sequel on my Kindle ready and waiting.