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What's on my reading list

It's been a while since I shared a 'what's on my reading list' type post and that's down to the fact that in the last year or so, I've hardly read anything. Shocking, I know but sometimes it feels like there are a million other things I need to do more urgently, especially now I'm a mama. Having said this, I really miss reading, so I've decided to make a conscious effort to read a little each night, even if it's only a few pages before I fall asleep. At the moment I'm reading both Summer at the Comfort Food Cafe and Girl On The Train, so I thought I'd share a little bit about what made me pick them, along with a couple of other books on my reading list.

Summer at the Comfort Food Cafe by Debbie Johnson
My mum's really into her books (she even runs her own book blog) and as soon as she finished Summer at the Comfort Food Cafe, she said 'MEGAN YOU HAVE TO READ THIS!' And I'm so glad I have started reading it because it's actually hilarious. I remember hearing my mum laughing out loud at some of it and I've found myself doing the same. It follows the story of widow, Laura, who has decided to uproot her family from Manchester and move to Dorset to take on a summer job at the Comfort Food Cafe. It's there she meets numerous wonderfully weird characters, who I can't wait to meet myself when I get further into the book! Mum's said it's a romantic story but has also described it as one of 'healing, family and being brave enough to dip your toe back into the pond again, after life's unpredictable knocks' in her review. I feel like it's the perfect story for me to read at this time in my life and I can't wait to see how the story unfolds. It's definitely going to be my holiday read!

"The Comfort Food Cafe is perched on a windswept clifftop at what feels like the edge of the world, serving up the most delicious cream teas; beautifully baked breads, and carefully crafted cupcakes. For tourists and locals alike, the ramshackle cafe overlooking the beach is a beacon of laughter, companionship, and security – a place like no other; a place that offers friendship as a daily special, and where a hearty welcome is always on the menu. For widowed mum-of-two Laura Walker, the decision to uproot her teenaged children and make the trek from Manchester to Dorset for the summer isn’t one she takes lightly, and it’s certainly not winning her any awards from her kids, Nate and Lizzie. Even her own parents think she’s gone mad. Her new job at the cafe, and the hilarious people she meets there, give Laura the chance she needs to make new friends; to learn to be herself again, and – just possibly – to learn to love again as well. For her, the Comfort Food Cafe doesn’t just serve food – it serves a second chance to live her life to the full…"

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
I've also started reading The Girl on the Train as it's been described as 'the new Gone Girl' and has been made into a film, which is coming out this year. Initially I hated Gone Girl but once I got to the bit where there's that big-old-twist, I loved every word from then on. So, I thought, hey why not give The Girl on the Train a go! It's by a different author but you can definitely see similarities in their writing styles. It has a really creepy feel to it and is full of suspense. I'm only part way through it and I'm eager to see what's going to happen next. I've got a feeling it's one that'll keep you guessing.

'Rachel catches the same commuter train every morning. She knows it will wait at the same signal each time, overlooking a row of back gardens. She’s even started to feel like she knows the people who live in one of the houses. ‘Jess and Jason’, she calls them. Their life – as she sees it – is perfect. If only Rachel could be that happy. And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Now Rachel has a chance to become a part of the lives she’s only watched from afar. Now they’ll see; she’s much more than just the girl on the train…'

Flawed by Cecelia Ahern
Again, another recommendation from my mama! Flawed is next on my reading list and since I've loved every one of Cecelia Ahern's books I've read so far, I'm almost sure I'm going to like this one too!

'Celestine North lives a perfect life. She’s a model daughter and sister, she’s well-liked by her classmates and teachers, and she’s dating the impossibly charming Art Crevan. But then Celestine encounters a situation in which she makes an instinctive decision. She breaks a rule and now faces life-changing repercussions. She could be imprisoned. She could be branded. She could be found FLAWED. In this stunning novel, bestselling author Cecelia Ahern depicts a society in which perfection is paramount and mistakes are punished. And where one young woman decides to take a stand that could cost her everything.'

The Microbiome Effect* by Toni Haman & Alex Wakeford
This book is completely different from the others on my reading list as it's non-fiction but as a mama, who is still fascinated by all things birth and baby related, I think it'll be an interesting read. As far as I understand, it's all about how the way in which a baby is born affects their future health. I think it's going to be quite 'sciencey' though, so hopefully I'll get it!

'At least two amazing events happen during childbirth. There's the obvious main event, which is the emergence of a new human into the world. But then there's the non-human event that is taking place simultaneously, a crucial event that is not visible to the naked eye, an event that could determine the lifelong health of the baby. This is the seeding of the baby's microbiome, the community of ‘good’ bacteria that we carry with us throughout our lives. The seeding of the microbiome, along with other processes including breastfeeding, kickstarts the baby's immune system and helps to protect the infant from disease for its entire lifetime. However, with interventions like use of synthetic oxytocin, antibiotics, C-section and formula feeding, this could be interfering with, or bypassing completely, the microbial transfer from the mother to baby. Emerging research shows that bacteria are absolutely vital for human health, and science has linked an imbalance in the human microbiome with multiple chronic non-transmissible diseases. 

Drawing on the extensive research they carried out for their documentary film Microbirth, authors Toni Harman and Alex Wakeford reveal a fascinating new view of birth, and how microscopic happenings can have lifelong consequences, both for ourselves, our children – and our species as a whole.'

Are any of these books on your reading list too?
I'd love to hear your thoughts on them if you've read them but shhh - no spoilers!