Oh what to read next? I find it increasingly hard to choose – for a start I have so many – my physical to be read bookcase is groaning, but then my kindle is full of great titles too. Then there are the books I sometimes feel I should read, review copies (very few of those) book group reads, books for challenges – do rather get in the way of spontaneity.
When I am able to be spontaneous I find myself drawn more to one kind of book than another – old books – when I say old books I don’t necessarily mean the physical edition is old (though I do love aged tomes) but that the original publication date is probably pre 1960 – certainly pre 1980’s. I love old hardbacks with pretty dust jackets, but am just as happy with a lovely shiny new reprint, I adore Virago and Persephone I think that is well known, but I also love Vintage and Penguin classics, I may start collecting the Penguin Vintage crime greens too. Loving old books would be fine if I didn’t find myself drawn to buying/acquiring “new” books and not reading them. I so enjoy engaging with readers and bloggers here and on twitter and Facebook so it is very easy to hear about all sorts of exciting books.
New books I often simply download to my kindle, there is I’m afraid a bit of an instant gratification thing here – I read a fabulous review – and then clickety clickety click and it appears on my kindle as if by magic – unfortunately there they often stay for ages. Naturally this kindle book downloading all ties in with my book buying addiction, which I am dealing with (badly) – the free books from Project Gutenberg I don’t even count! However when I am picking my next book to read, my eye and my hand almost always reaches out toward an old book or reprint of an old book, or a Project Gutenberg book on my kindle – and those new books I paid real money for sit there. So I am addressing this, you might not have noticed, but for the last two or three months I have been making a concerted effort to get to at least two of the newer books from my tbr. This doesn’t actually mean I will be buying more new books – I buy far more old books in fact – but I am pledging to read the new books I already have. To me anything is new if it is published this century.
In August I read: The Lemon Grove (hideous stupid book) and Instructions for a Heatwave (excellent) and He Wants (brilliant) – review to be published next month on SNB.
In July I read Americanah (brilliant) and A Girl is a half formed thing (very mixed feelings)
In June I read The Last Kings of Sark, (very enjoyable), By a Slow River (very good) and A Song for Issy Bradley (very very good)
I am determined all these “new” books I have bought on a whim will be read. Thereafter I will be careful not to just buy books blindly that I am less likely to read. However maybe reading all my impulse buys will widen my horizons a little too.
So then I need recommendations for which of my new books to read next. I want to try and read at least six of them before New Year. Do I have any here I need to avoid? For instance – is The Cuckoo’s Calling – likely to be my kind of book?
On my Kindle I have:
The Cuckoo’s Calling – Robert Galbraith
The Bookstore – Deborah Meyler
The People in the Photo – Helen Gestern
Burial Rites – Hannah Kent
We are all Completely Beside Ourselves – Karen Joy Fowler
Ghost Moon – Ron Butlin
Mrs Robinson’s Disgrace – Kate Summerscale (non fiction)
Harvest – Jim Crace
A Lovesong for India – Ruth Prawer Jhabvala
Rook – Jane Rushbridge
Longbourn –Jo Baker
In my physical bookcase – there is:
Flight behaviour – Barbara Kingsolver
Caleb’s Crossing – Geraldine Brooks
Peaches for Monsieur Le Curre – Joanne Harris
After such Kindness – Gaynor Arnold
(There are a few others I have almost certainly decided to cull and donate to bookcrossing – books bought at author signings – something I should have learned by now is often a mistake)
I also have three review copies of new books – which I am regarding out of the corner of my eye with some guilt – (I don’t really want to read them now – what do I do?)
*oh sigh* Help!