This long weekend was meant to be three days of just me and the cat curled up, gorging on chocolate brownies (me, not the cat), reading lots, blogging and watching far too much bad t.v. That was the plan anyway. In actuality, I’ve spent a good 24 hours trying to frighten away a migraine (my first! Do I get a medal?) and so I only have the mental energy for one post. I shamelessly stole the idea from Simon over at Stuck in a Book, and might try and do one post like this every month or so. Thanks Simon! And so, without further ado:
1.) The book I’m currently reading:
I love Ann Cleeves’ writing; even though I only read my first of her novels a couple of months ago, she’s fast becoming my ‘modern’ crime writer of choice. Unusually for me, I don’t guess the murderer about 4 chapters in, the characterisation is spot-on and Cleeves has a wonderful talent for creating atmospheric tension. The Sleeping and the Dead isn’t part of any of the series, but a one-off novel, featuring detective Peter Porteous. I’ve only just started it, but so far, so good!
2.) The last book I finished:
I have really mixed feelings about How to be a Woman by Caitlin Moran. I really enjoy her columns in The Times, and her tweets frequently make me snort with laughter, so when I saw that she had written a book about feminism ‘from a bar-stool’, I was intrigued. I think that your reaction to it depends on your expectations. If you’re expecting a life-changing tome which will have the same effect on the feminist movement as The Female Eunuch, then you might be disappointed. If you’re looking for a very funny, very honest and occcasionally very moving autobiographical book about Moran’s search for a global politeness, then this might well be the book for your journey to work.
3.) The next book I want to read:
I can’t believe that I’ve never read American Gods by Neil Gaiman- it makes me feel a little bit of a failiure. Having followed the twitter feed from his talk at the Edinburgh Book Festival last night, thanks to Jen of Weird Things That Customers Say fame, I am going to rectify this as soon as I’ve finished my current book. Mr. Bibliomouse will be so proud.
4.) The last book I bought:
It’s Good Behaviour by Molly Keane, the edition that I wrote about earlier in the week. I’ve started reading it and it’s wonderful. And, once again, bunnies!
5.) The last book I was given:
Tan is an illustrator whose books contain either very few, or no word at all. His work is surreal and beautiful, and I know that it’s enjoyed by both children and adults. Mr. Bibliomouse went to see a talk by him at Seven Stories, which is a fantastic children’s book centre in Newcastle, recently and bought me a copy of The Red Tree. He also had it signed by Tan, and it’s now one of my favourite possessions. Inside every book that he signs, he stamps a little red fingerprint and makes it into a little doodle. Every book! I may have sqeee-d slightly when I was given it (just before I cried as I read it, for about the 5th time). The Red Tree by Shaun Tan is one of the best books about depression that I’ve come across. This is odd on several levels, not least because it might not actually be about depression at all…
You must look up Tan’s work, especially this book and The Arrival , which has no words but it the most fabulous story.
And those are my five books for August!