TOP TEN TUESDAY: Ten Books I Picked Up On A Whim

Top Ten Tuesday is a feature run by BrokeAndBookish each week – I’m thinking I might not take part every week but just see if a week takes my fancy. This week it’s all about books you picked up on a whim, I’m going to take this as books I bought on a whim – so books that I’d never heard of, hadn’t read reviews for and books that I may have seen in passing on the internet but knew very little about. On to the books!

sudden death coverSudden Death by Alvaro Enrigue
I bought this book in Any Amount of Books, a lovely second-hand book shop off Leicester Square, the last time I was in in London. I had never heard of it before and when I read the blurb I was still none the wiser what it was actually about. It’s something to do with a tennis match and it mentions a lot of different historical figures and time-periods. I have no idea what it’s about or whether I’ll like it but that’s what made me pick it up.

the secret fire coverThe Secret Fire by CJ Daugherty and Carina Rozenfeld
I bought this one during the London Bookswap Crawl and I had never heard of it before. The striking cover was what drew me to it and then it was only a couple of quid so I ended up buying it. I haven’t read it yet but I have a feeling I’m going to get to it sooner rather than later.


asking for it louise oneilAsking For It by Louise O’Neill
So I had heard about this book through murmurings on the internet but I hadn’t read any full reviews. Then one day I was browsing Amazon, clicking from book to book and I saw Asking For It again and it wasn’t that expensive so I bought it. My review is here. (more…)

REVIEW: Egghead by Bo Burnham and Chance Bone

eggheadA collection of emotional yet odd poetry and thoughts accompanied by illustrations.

Bo Burnham is a comedian, musician and poet who you may have seen across the internet as his witty songs are often turned into gif form. I had seen the gifs and the odd clip of his performances and I really liked his sense of humour so when I saw his book in a second hand book sale I thought it was the time to pick it up.

The poetry is often weird and creepy but it’s so funny and then I found myself thinking, “Why am I laughing at this?! It’s slightly disturbing?” Then there was the poetry that was more emotional, one of my favourites was called “Beautiful” and the way Chance Bone’s illustrations went with that poem worked really well.

The format of the poems often add to the humour, for example “Entrance” which makes a reference to Tetris so the poem is like one of those long, five block Tetris pieces. Then there’s the poems that make you think, like “Change” which I will quote now because it’s short and perfect: “I don’t expect to change your mind with one conversation, only to chip away at it, like a woodpecker on a redwood tree.” What a good poem right?!

Some of Burnham’s poems are only a couple of lines long while others take up a double page and Bone’s illustrations are related to each poem. All the illustrations are in black and white and look like simple pen drawings but when they’re with Burnham’s writing, some of the illustrations are a bit unsettling while others kind of beautiful in their simplicity.

The only thing negative I’ve really got to say about Egghead is that a lot of the poems feel like they would have been more funny or impactful when actually spoken aloud. As I read them in my head I thought how emphasis on different parts could make the meaning suddenly different but seeing Burnham’s poetry written down and experiencing it that way definitely makes me want to check out more of his shows online.

If like funny and off-kilter poetry or if you are a fan of Bo Burnham, you should definitely check Egghead out. 4/5.

bo burnham