Shelf Swap with Grace from Almost Amazing Grace

Shelf Swap with Grace from Almost Amazing Grace

I love swapping book recommendations, so I’m asking one person each month to pick five books from my Goodreads shelves that they want to read and five books from their own shelves that they think I might like to read.

I’m happy to welcome Grace Latter (@gracieactually), blogger at Almost Amazing Grace and events human at Maximum Pop! Books, to Pretty Books for Shelf Swap!


High Fidelity by Nick Hornby
The story of the man who owns a record store and has a list of his worst relationships/breakups. Like a ‘Desert Island Discs’ situation, but with exes and sexcapades. Now, I know I will like Nick Hornby. I know I’ll get into his style of writing. Yet for some reason, I keep buying his books and never reading them! I saw the film High Fidelity recently and I am told the book is better. Plus I do love a good bitter tale now and again…!

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
Drifters George and Lennie roam around California searching for something meaningful. Then gentle giant Lennie gets in trouble and things are thrown off balance… Every English class was reading this at school before exams. Every class except mine! I kept hearing how magical this book was – even my friends who hated reading (!!) were engrossed. It was the same situation with Holes, and I finally read that recently. So I need to read this now, for my inner 15-year-old!

Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh
The book of the blog; Allie’s crazy awesome artwork with accompanying essays about complicated feelings, specific situations, just life in general. This has been recommended to me so many times! I really think I’ll relate to it on several levels. I am fascinated by some author’s ability to combine art with their words and capture the most inexplicable things so perfectly.

Nothing Tastes As Good by Claire Hennessy
Annabel is a deceased anorexic teen who has been summoned as a ‘helper’ for Julia, another girl struggling with food. She’s not too happy about that… All my pals have been receiving proofs of this recently. I am a huge fan of Claire on Twitter, so I already know I’ll love her writing style. This novel covers issues close to my heart – body positivity is so important to me, after many years of hating the way I looked, and how heavy I was (/am).

The Hundred and One Dalmatians by Dodie Smith
We all know this story – especially me as I’ve watched both films many, many times. I would be so interested in how it is told in a book! Although I may have to somehow erase the vibrant vision of Glenn Close as Cruella De Vil first… I hate reading a book after seeing the film and thus seeing the actors in the film as the characters!


Crush by Eve Ainsworth
Abuse in relationships isn’t always 100% physical. Quite a lot of the time it’s psychological – pushing, pressuring, pandering. Eve Ainsworth bravely addresses this with her excellent writing.

Stacey says: I always need to read more UKYA than I do, and Eve Ainsworth has received a lot of praise for Crush and her previous novel Seven Days, about bullying.

The Bloody Chamber & Other Stories by Angela Carter
After studying this (or rather reading it madly on trains to and from uni, fine-combing it and arguing about it with my peers in seminars, then writing endless essays about it until the small hours on the day of the deadlines), I find myself recommending it to almost everyone I know. Angela Carter is ‘the white witch of literature’. She casts spells with her words. Her take on fairy tales is chilling yet delicious.

Stacey says: I’ve chosen to read this in October for the 2016 Classics Challenge – it sounds perfectly creepy!

You Know Me Well by David Levithan & Nina LaCour
I can never get enough of David Levithan’s gorgeous words. I often just read one sentence and have to take a moment to reflect and recover…his teaming up with Nina LaCour was perfection! You Know Me Well is about two besties, both gay and searching for something most urgently. Their friendship saves them a little bit in their respective disasters.

Stacey says: I really enjoyed Every Day, Two Boys Kissing, and Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares from David Levithan, so I’m sure I’ll like this too.

Counting Stars by Keris Stainton
I love Keris, generally, and her writing is gorgeous. Somehow in this novel she juggles several different stories at once, keeping all points of view equally engaging. Anna has left school and moved straight to inner city Liverpool, to pursue her dreams… the problem is, the dreams are proven to be a little out of reach when she arrives. Luckily she is able to vlog still – although maybe she’s saying too much online…?

Stacey says: I love Keris as a person but for some reason haven’t yet picked up one of her YA books! I rarely get to read books about new flatmates and new jobs, so I think I’ll love this!

Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
Creepy as can be. I had to read this for English Lit A Level and I both loved and hated it. An older man fancies a young girl and so he takes her, imprisons her, tries to make her love him back. She tries everything to escape, including seducing him.

Stacey says: I first heard about this from a friend when I was 16. She was studying it for her AS Level… but I still haven’t picked it up! It’ll be another for the classics challenge, I’m sure.

Thank you, Gracie, for swapping shelves with me!

Which of these books would you read?

6 thoughts on “Shelf Swap with Grace from Almost Amazing Grace

  1. I also want to read High Fidelity and You Know Me Well at some point. Lolita is incredibly creepy, but worth the read, I think, if only for the writing. Have fun reading, you two!

  2. High Fidelity is one of my all time favourites. So funny, so blokey, but so relatable at the same time!

  3. Hi!! I’ve been following your blog for a couple of months now, and I really liked all the books you’ve read, and will be adding them to my “want to read” list, but I thought maybe you try this author I discovered just 2 months ago. Sarah Dessen. She writes novels based on realistic fiction, and a lot of her main topics focus on teenagers and romance. I don’t know if you’ve already read her books or not, but I feel the book “Saint Anything” is a good place to start because it’s a book that can touch your heart 🙂

    • I read Saint Anything last year and reviewed it on here – I’m really looking forward to reading more from her. Thank you for the kind words about the blog 🙂

  4. Found High Fidelity here the other day, haven’t read it in a long time and am terrified it would ruin it for me, it used to be my favourite book, I love music and used to always make up playlists myself. Great idea on the swap, enjoy!

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