To be read books July 2014Well, I have to say, the TBR is not looking too bad at all, is it? Of course, it’s been helped by having a holiday at the beginning of June – I took more paper books than I’d expected, including the large paperback “At Home” and didn’t acquire  more than a Mr Man book in Icelandic and an Icelandic-English dictionary which even I’m not going to read cover to cover. The shelf is definitely less full than it was in June, although I do note that it was quite ‘good’ in July 2013, as well, which suggests that it’s a seasonal thing. Anyway, there’s the shelf, and if you can’t make it out, the front row finishes at the sage green book (by Angela Thirkell) about, what, 2/5 of the way along?

July 2014 current 1I’ve just finished reading Mary Hocking’s “Good Daughters” to help Heaven-Ali celebrate Hocking’s life in June. Review will come soon, but I’m glad I was able to take part (I’ve had the book for 20 years so it wasn’t in any TBR pic!) I’m currently reading this excellent-looking book, “Through the Language Glass” by Guy Deutscher. I’m not very far into it yet, but it seems to be saying that different languages do reflect different ways of thinking on the part of their speakers, which goes against some of the current linguistic theorists (the common example here is the Inuit having 200-odd words for snow, suggesting that they see the world differently, with some people pointing out that in fact they have lots of different words for different kinds of weather, as we all do).  Anyway, I’ll report back further when I’ve read it. I’m still chuffed that this was sent to me by one of my lovely clients as a little Christmas present – very appropriate from a translation and interpreting agency, too!

Penguin Special My other current read is I think the last purchase from my last Oxford trip – “Penguin Special” by Jeremy Lewis. This is ever so good – while it’s a biography of Allen Lane, founder of Penguin books, it’s very much the life and TIMES, with immense amounts of research and information being put across in a lively and effective style, and it’s superbly well-written, and edited, as one would expect. A joy to read and I’m only about a third of the way through it, so much more pleasure to go.

Jun 2014 IcelandI’m still also dipping into and loving “The Sagas of the Icelanders” and will hopefully be reading Egil’s Saga along with a few other people over the summer. If you’re on Facebook and would like to join my Saga Reading group, please let me know and I’ll join you up! Talking about reading projects, I do need to read the last book of Thomas Hardy short stories for Heaven-Ali’s readalong – I’ll be borrowing that from her in print book form soon.

Books to read nextComing up next … I’m not doing A Month of Re-Reading in July, because I did A Month of Reading About Iceland in May and even though that got some off the TBR and read, it did disrupt the general reading scheme. One thing I am doing again is All Virago / All August, so I’ve put together here the next books I have coming up if you don’t count the Viragoes and Persephones (this is allowed, as a sister in spirit of Virago). Quite a nice mix – some lovely non-fiction about maps and the London Underground, a set of books given to me by a friend to help with my Century of Reading project, a Jeffrey Eugenides which might just have been chosen as a birthday present for me because of its title, and the history of micro-lending website, Kiva. All look good to me.

What are you planning for your July reading? Any projects coming up?