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oldways

February has been a great reading month for me. It’s very hard to pick my favourites, as favgodseverything has been so wonderfully memorable. Despite not often reading much non-fiction I read two amazing non-fiction books that are linked by poet Edward Thomas ‘The Old ways’ and ‘Under storm’s Wing’ which I can’t praise highly enough.
My two top fiction reads from this month then were:
A favourite of the Gods – Sybille Bedford – a beautifully written novel about three generations of mothers and daughters – I’ll be reading the sequel soon.
Guard your daughters – by Diana Tutton – which I finally got around to reading and loved every bit as many other bloggers before me had.

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I have gathered together a nice pile for March which includes one book I had originally planned to read during February but didn’t get around to.
My current read – which I am enjoying very much despite the sometimes brutal nature of the story is The Blind Man’s Garden by Nadeem Aslam, I don’t expect I’ll finish it until the weekend – the writing is glorious. I stumped up for the hardback when I realised it had been released as I have loved Aslam’s previous books.
Up next will be The Woodlanders by Thomas Hardy for my Hardy reading challenge – I remember loving it the first time around which was a long time ago.
Jane and Prudence – Barbara Pym, another re-read I’ll be reading for our Pym read-a-long.
The Death of Lyndon Wilder and the consequences thereof – E A Dineley – sent by the publishers.
Mr Brigg’ Hat – Kate Colquhon, a true life Victorian mystery which I am looking forward to.
Ruby’s spoon – Anna Lawrence Pietroni – who’ll be talking to a local meet up group I sometimes attend toward the end of the month.
A Compass Error – Sybille Bedford, the sequel to A favourite of the gods.
Taking Chances – Molly Keane – which is the book I had selected for the classic spin
Nightingale Wood – Stella Gibbons, which was part of my Librarything Virago group secret Santa gift.
These all look so good – I do hope I manage to find time for them all.

What will you be reading in March?

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november

So this is what I read in November – some lovely books among them. I actually even managed to read two non-fiction books as well. The last week I have been reading very slowly, which may not bode well for December, and I have quite a pile gathered together for this month, but more of that later.

113. The Two Mrs Abbotts – D E Stevenson (1943)
114. Two on a Tower – Thomas Hardy (1882)
115. Mrs Palfrey at the Claremont – Elizabeth Taylor (1971)
116. Shrinking Violet – Karina Lickorish Quinn (2012)
117. Tea by the Nursery Fire – Noel Streatfield (1976)
118. Harriet – Elizabeth Jenkins (1934)
119. Brief Lives – Anita Brookner (1990)
120. Talking to the dead – Helen Dunmore (1996)
121. Jane Austen selected letters (2004)
122. To Bed with Grand Music – Marghanita Laski (1934)
123 The keeper of secrets – Judith Cutler (2007)

My special mentions for November will have to be :

1 The Two Mrs Abbotts – D E Stevenson, lovely cosy reading the third in the Miss Buncle series.

2 Mrs Palfrey at the Claremont – Elizabeth Taylor – a wonderful novel, deeply poignant.

3 Harriet – Elizabeth Jenkins – a remarkable novel re-issued by Persephone books, based upon true events.

4 To bed with Grand Music – another Persephone book, a WW2 story about a woman with a rather different attitude than we often see.

Suddenly then it is the end of the year, Christmas is just around the corner, and I am considering which books will see me through to the end of 2012.  I have got together a fairly serious looking pile, so not sure if I’ll make it through the whole lot – but I will give it a good shot.

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On my fairly extensive pile for December are:

(on my kindle) William: the story of an Englishman – Cecily Hamilton

At Mrs Lippincote’s – Elizabeth Taylor

Blaming – Elizabeth Taylor

Thomas Hardy – Thomas and Florence Hardy

Lost and Found – by Tom Winter  (sent to me by Corsair books)

The Starbound Sea – Amber Dermot (sent to me by Corsair books)

Jenny Wren – E H Young

The Easter Parade – Richard Yates (the book I won via the blog hop giveaway)

The Rector and The Doctor’s Family – Margaret Oliphant

Park Life – Katherine D’ Souza

An Inventory of heaven – Jane Feaver  (sent to me by Corsair books)

This is a list I could happily salivate over.  I just hope I get to read them all – I know I am busy this month, not to mention really tired – but at least I have the last ten days of December off work, and may be able to to just curl up and read and read and read.

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Nine books read during October, and quite a mixed bag of things I think. Some of them were slower reads, which is why despite one week off work and away on holiday I didn’t manage to read more than what is lower end of my average in a month. I continue to be even worse than usual with non-fiction at the moment and am going to trey and read one or two during November.

104 The Wedding Group (1968) Elizabeth Taylor (F)
105 The Casual Vacancy (2012) J K Rowling (F)
106 The Moorland Cottage (1850) Elizabeth Gaskell (F)
107 Umbrella (2012) Will Self (F)
108 The Children (1928) Edith Wharton (F)
109 A Treacherous Likeness (2013) Lynn Shepherd (F)
110 Lady Audley’s secret (1862) Mary Elizabeth Braddon (F)
111 The Limit (1911) Ada Leverson (F)
112 The penguin book of ghost stories (2010) Michael Newton (ed) (F)

So my Special mentions for October are:

1 The Children – Edith Wharton – one of Edith Wharton’s slightly less well known novels, about a middle aged man’s infatuation with a fifteen year old girl.

2. A Treacherous Likeness – Lynn Shepherd – not published yet _ I was lucky to read an uncorrected proof – loved it great atmosphere blending fact and fiction in the lives of the Shelleys.

3. Lady Audley’s Secret – Mary Elizabeth Braddon – a fantastic ninteenth century sensation novel – I loved every word.

 

I have gathered togther a nice little stack to read during November.  As I have been doing so badly reading non-fiction I have incuded two non-fiction titles. There are also reads for my Thomas Hardy challenge and the continuing Elizabeth Taylor centenary readalong. I am also doing my bit for libraries with my current read.

My reads for November then – hopefully – distractions permitting wil be:

1. To Bed with Grand Music – Marghanita Laski

2 Harriet – Elizabeth Jenkins

3 Mrs Palfrey at the Claremont- Elizabeth Taylor

4 Two on a Tower – Thomas Hardy

5 Tea by the Nursery Fire – Noel Streatfield

6 Brief Lives – Anita Brookner

7  Selected Letters – Jane Austen

8 Talking to the dead – Helen Dunmore

9 The Two Mrs Abbotts – D E Stevenson – which I am currently reading. (It’s the third “Miss Buncle book)

A set of books to be eagerly anticipated I think, and I am really looking forward to them. What will you be reading during November?

One thing about these chilly early winter evenings – they are perfect for reading. Unfortunatly work is a bit full on at the moment so I am being tempted away from my books by TV too – I need a bit of easy distraction sometimes. Early bedtimes with my book though, are very much the order of the day at the moment.

 

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To be read….soon

I haven’t done one of these to be read soon posts for a while, and this one is a couple of days late. I wanted to pick a range of things to read in September – I have put together a pile of books that I am really looking forward to reading.

They are A Laodicean by Thomas Hardy – which I am currently reading.

A House in Paris – Elizabeth Bowen

The Thing around your Neck – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Died in the Wool – Ngaio Marsh

Painted Clay – Capel Boake

Prophecy – S J Parris

A Pin to see a Peepshow – F. Tennyson Jesse

The Sweet Shop Owner – Graham Swift

Brief Lives – Anita Brookner

Selected Letters – Jane Austen

In edition I will possibly also continue to dip into The Collected short stories of Elizabeth Taylor.

Now that I am back at work today after the summer break, I am not sure how much reading I will get done, still have decided to aim high.

So what will you be reading this month?

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It’s the last day of June today – and I am looking ahead to my summer of reading. In three weeks I finish work for the summer holidays – I work in a primary school. The summer here in the UK is already shaping up to be pretty horrendous – some places had a months rain in a day this week. Therefore I will be retreating to my books – and if it turns out I can sit in the sunshine with my book – it will be an added bonus. As many of you will know Liz and I are doing a month of re-reading in July. Despite a massive TBR – I am looking forward to ignoring it and spending time re-reading books I loved before.

Despite it not quite being July – I have started on my re-reading in July pile of books. Looking at the stack in front of me, made me realise I would in fact be spending July with some old and dear friends. I am currently reading The Trumpet Major the July/August read for my Hardy reading group. I remember little of the actual plot – but just opening up my old penguin classics edition and starting to read my favourite author – is a pure joy – Hardy’s language instantly familiar to me. For the rest of the month I will be reacquainting myself with dear Dr Aziz and Mrs Moore in A Passage to India – Lucy Snow in Villette, Catherine Moorland in Northanger Abbey and Flora Poste in Cold Comfort Farm, not to forget dear old Poirot in Dead Man’s Folly. There is great comfort somehow in picking up a book one has read before, you feel you know what is coming – there are no nasty surprises – even if you can’t remember the whole plot. Of course each reading experience is different – I am a different person to the one who first read some of these books – and so I expect my reaction may differ somewhat too – but that is quite interesting. I am looking forward to meeting up with these old friends and seeing how we get along together now.
I had a lot of interest when I first posted about my re-reading in July challenge – so I look forward to hearing about how everyone else gets on with meeting up again with their old friends.

So that takes care of July. What about August? I will have the whole of August away from work – I will be spending one week of August on holiday by the sea in Devon. I am hoping that the Librarything Virago group will be doing the All Virago/all August, thing they did last year –as I have loads of wonderful Virago books on my TBR calling to me from the bookshelves. If Virago all August isn’t happening on Librarything – maybe I’ll do it anyway. So the weather may be a disaster – but I hope my books will keep me happy, I think they will.

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To be read…soon

Really pleased that I read all the books on last month’s list – and I have got a lovely pile to look forward to now. I have actually just started the first of them.

So to be read soon this time are:

The New moon and the Old – Dodie Smith

Nella Last and the 1950’s Edited by Patricia and Robert Malcomson

The Magnificent Spilsbury and the case of the Brides in the Bath – Jane Robins

The Bottle Factory Outing – Beryl Bainbridge – reading for the Beryl Bainbridge reading week later in June.

Manja – Anna Gmeyner

The Sleeping Beauty – Elizabeth Taylor – currently reading

The Age of Innocence – Edith Wharton

Illyrian Spring – Ann Bridge

Aisles – Paul Magrs

I am eagerly anticipating these books – I have a week off work next week – half term – so hope to make a good start on them.

So then what will you be reading in June?

 

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To be read….soon

 

I didn’t quite manage all of last month’s list as I explained in my last post.  One of the books I didn’t get round to is my current read and another has made it on to this month’s list  – the third is back on the shelf for now. So I am keeping this month’s list a little shorter to allow for other things that come along – like a possible book club read that I may decide to read.

So my to be read soons for May are:

 

The Return of the native – Thomas Hardy –  a re-read for the Thomas Hardy challenge I have going.

A game of hide and seek – Elizabeth Taylor – for the librarything centenary read a long.

Offshore – Penelope Fitzgerald – one from last months pile

The Bolter – Frances Osborne – the only non-fiction I fancy right now.

Family Roundabout – Richmal Crompton – a lovely Persephone book I am looking forward to.

The Crowded Street – Winifred Holtby a nice virago by an author I adore – a re-read.

The Case of the missing servant – Tarquin Hall – a lovely looking cosy type of book.

I also may be reading Bring up the Bodies by Hilary Mantel – which is out on the 10th May and which I have pre-ordered. I just may dive straight into it when it gets here, and I think it is a fairly hefty tome.

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