TOP TEN TUESDAY: Books with Geographical Terms in the Title

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by The Artsy Reader Girl. This is one of those themes that I thought would be pretty easy but when I actually took a look at the books on my TBR or the ones I’ve already read I found it was a bit more difficult than I thought. I do have ten books with ten different geographical terms in their titles though. I’ve also included the definition for each term (as they appear on the glossary of geographical terms Wikipedia page) as while some are obvious, some aren’t so common terms. I’ve read all these books and have linked to my review if there is one.

And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini
Mountain – A large landform that rises prominently above the surrounding land in a limited area, usually in the form of a rocky peak with great vertical relief; a mountain is generally considered steeper than a hill.

Red Seas, Under Red Skies by Scott Lynch
Sea – Any large body of salt water surrounded in whole or in part by land/any large subdivision of the World Ocean.

City of Clowns by Daniel Alarcón and Sheila Alvarado
City – A large human settlement, generally with extensive systems constructed for housing, transportation, sanitation, utilities, and communication.

The Desert and the Drum by Mbarek Ould Beyrouk
Desert – An arid, barren area of land where little precipitation occurs and living conditions are consequently unfavorable for most plant and animal life.

Lagoon by Nnedi Okorafor
Lagoon – A small area of water connected to the ocean but otherwise blockaded by one or more islands.

Dune by Frank Herbert
Dune – A hill of loose sand built by the movements and erosional and depositional processes of wind or water, often occurring in deserts and coastal areas.

Forest of a Thousand Lanterns by Julie C. Dao
Forest – Any extensive area dominated by communities of trees.

Shadows on the Tundra by Dalia Grinkevičiūtė
Tundra – A treeless plain characteristic of the Arctic and subarctic regions.

The Old Drift by Namwali Serpell
Drift – the name for all material of glacial origin found anywhere on land or at sea, including sediment and large rocks.

The Silent Steppe: The Story of a Kazakh Nomad under Stalin by Mukhamet Shayakhmetov
Steppe – An ecoregion characterized by expansive grassland plains without trees apart from those near rivers and lakes,

Have you read any of these? What are the geographical terms you found most common? I’ve definitely read more books with “city” in the title than any other.

TOP TEN TUESDAY: Ten Books Set Outside The US

Top Ten Tuesday is a feature run by BrokeAndBookish each week. This week it’s all about different book settings, especially as so many popular books are set in the USA, so it’s good to share books that are set in different places to the norm.

FullSizeRender (1)Beautiful Broken Things by Sara Barnard
This book is set in Brighton in England. It stuck with me as I actually live about 45 minutes away from Brighton so it was fun recognising the place that the story was set.



tokyo heist elenasquareeyesTokyo Heist by Diana Renn
As the title might suggest, the majority of this book is set in Tokyo. The descriptions of Tokyo are very vivid and then when the story moves to Kyoto it sounds like such a beautiful and peaceful place.


lagoon elenasquareeyesLagoon by Nnedi Okorafor
Lagoon is set in Lagos in Nigeria – a place I’ve never been too and I’d never read a book set there either. While I have mixed feelings about the book, I loved how Lagos was described and it felt like a bustling city that may have it’s problems but was still kind of beautiful. (more…)

TOP TEN TUESDAY: Top Ten Books I Enjoyed That Have Under 2000 Ratings On Goodreads

Top Ten Tuesday is a feature run by BrokeAndBookish each week. This week it’s all about underrated books and to be more subjective about it, I’m gonna see what’s underrated by having them be under 2,000 ratings on Goodreads. For those interested my Goodreads is here and I’m finally getting the hang of updating it! So without further ado, here are some underappreciated books I think you should read!

FullSizeRender (94)Techbitch by Lucy Sykes and Jo Piazza (51 ratings on Goodreads)
This book is some great chick-lit that doesn’t go for all the tropes you might expect it to. It’s about a woman coming back to work at a major fashion magazine to find her former assistant has been filling her roll and the whole magazine is going to become a digital one. It’s a great culture clash of ideas about PR and how magazines should be and it’s a lot of fun. My review is here.


emancipatedEmancipated by M.G. Reyes (524 ratings on Goodreads)
Admittedly I hadn’t heard of this book till fairly recently but I really enjoyed it. It’s a contemporary YA about a house full of teenagers who have been emancipated from their parents or guardians for various reasons and they all have their own secrets and problems. It’s an addictive read. My review is here.


FullSizeRender (20)Rocket Girl Vol. 1: Times Squared by Brandon Montclare and Amy Reeder (913 ratings on Goodreads)
This comic is so fun and very feminist. DaYoung is a teenage cop from the future is sent back to 1986 to stop scientist creating a machine that will destroy the future. The art is brilliant; it really feels like DaYoung is flying through the pages (yeah she can fly because of her future tech) and while the 1980s setting is a lot of fun there is still a mystery to solve. My review is here. (more…)

READ THE WORLD – Nigeria: Lagoon by Nnedi Okorafor

lagoon elenasquareeyesOne night three strangers meet on the beach outside Lagos. Adaora, a marine biologist, Anthony, a world-famous rapper, and Agu, a troubled solider – three people who feel alone in the world who are suddenly going to become bound together. When a meteorite hits the ocean and a tidal wave pulls them into the water, they discover a whole new world and people. Together with the mysterious and shapeshifting alien Ayodele, they are on a race against time to save the city and themselves.

Lagoon was an interesting read. It combines science fiction and what could be a typical “alien invasion” story with the politics, religion and folklore. Having a story about an alien encounter in any country that’s not the USA is unusual, and the author blends the people of Nigeria and this amazing event together. The people act like anyone would, they are scared, some are violent, some turn to religion, but it’s the language used in Lagoon that makes it different.

Lagoon was a bit tough to read some times. It jumps around from different characters without always giving you any indication who the character is. When you follow the four main characters Adaora, Anthony, Agu and Ayodele it’s easy to follow and they are great characters to read about but then there’s sometimes people who you are with for only a chapter or two which is a bit odd and disjointing. Adaora was my favourite character (she’s smart and level-headed which I liked a lot) but even she couldn’t pull me through it sometimes. I especially had trouble when there were chapters from the perspective of characters who spoke in Pidgin English, it was a language that I had to really concentrate on understanding. Also some characters and actions, while understandable because they were scared of a potential alien threat, were frustrating which put me off.

The writing in Lagoon is something you’ll either love or hate. While it is mainly written in the third person there’s also chapters written in the first and second person which always feel a bit weird when you get to them. That does seem to be intentional though as the whole book is weird and the creatures you see briefly are often strange and unnatural. Also while the writing is often pretty simple the way it uses a lot of magical realism and symbolism makes things feel unsettling.

Lagoon is a sci-fi book full of magical realism and odd creatures, it won’t be for everyone and I found it a bit tough to get through at times, but it does have some wonderful ideas. 3/5.

FRIDAY 56: Lagoon by Nnedi Okorafor

The Friday 56 is a weekly meme hosted by Freda’s Voice. The aim is to share a few sentences of a book (whether it’s the one you’re currently reading or not) so other people might be enticed to pick it up.

Here’s the rules:

– Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader
– Find any sentence, (or few, just don’t spoil it)
– Post it.
– Add the url of your post to the Linky on Freda’s most recent post.

lagoon elenasquareeyes

Something wasn’t right about what Moziz was saying but he wasn’t sure what it as. But he felt Moziz was right, what he’d seen in the video was just a woman. She looked like a slightly older version of his sister, even. She had to be harmless. She’d be easy to kidnap.

That was from page 56 of the paperback of Lagoon by Nnedi Okorafor