My reading for May has had a birthday theme, and I think this may become an annual event. My own birthday was on the 13th of May, a birth date I share with Daphne Du Maurier. So for almost the whole month I read books only by authors who were also born in May. This I called my birthday reading challenge – but really it wasn’t much of a challenge – as challenge suggests something that might be difficult – but in fact this was really quite a joy.
All my May babies books were really excellent but the standout books for the month would be The Pat Barker novels Life Class and Toby’s Room, and the Daphne Du Maurier books My Cousin Rachel and Jamaica Inn, another quiet little joy was William Trevor’s ‘Love and Summer’.
Having read ten books by May babies – I finished my month of birthday reading a few days early so I could read my next Hardy book and my librarything early reviewers book before June’s Pym reading week got under way. Which makes twelve book in all for May – all of them fiction – my non-fiction reading has been even worse than usual this year.
This then is the full list of May reading
47 The Sweet Shop Owner (1980) Graham Swift (F)
48 The Mystery of the Yellow Room (1908) Gaston Leroux (F)
49 A Backward Place (1965) Ruth Prawer Jhabvala (F)
50 Life Class (2007) Pat Barker (F)
51 My Cousin Rachel (1951) Daphne Du Maurier (F)
52 Jamaica Inn (1936) Daphne Du Maurier (F)
53 Toby’s Room (2012) Pat Barker (F)
54 The Sign of Four (1890) Arthur Conan Doyle (F)
55 Love and Summer (2009) William Trevor (F)
56 The Householder (1960) Ruth Prawer Jhabvala (F)
57 Wessex Tales (1888) Thomas Hardy (F)
58 Tango in Madeira (2013) Jim Williams (F)
I have some great things coming up in June. The Barbara Pym reading week is first on the agenda – and I am planning on reading ‘No Fond Return of Love’ and ‘A very Private Eye’ for that, moving on to A Quartet in Autumn later in the month. I also have my classic club spin book ‘Farewell Leicester Square’ to read, which I have heard good things off. Karen at Kaggysbookishramblings and Simon at Stuck in a book were reading ‘A Woman of My Age’ during May and I so wanted to join in, and fellow librarything member Elaine delighted me by sending me a copy – so although I’m a little late to the party I intend to read it this month. I also have a lovely proof copy of Rachel Joyce’s ‘Perfect’ to read – I’ll be reading and reviewing it at the end of the month – it’s published at the beginning of July. I’ve also added three books to my June pile that I have had TBR for ages, and another Virago book I have wanted to read for a while. All in all there’s a good pile there – and look, two non-fiction!