Nov 2015 the whole horrorI’ve had ever such a lot of work on recently and I seem to have been dashing around here, there and everywhere, too, so I have got a bit behind with my reading and reviewing and VERY behind with my reading of other people’s blogs and commenting on their posts … Anyway, this time I can report some good progress, at least, on the Pile that belongs to my TBR but isn’t part of the general order of things.

I read my main TBR in order of acquisition, oldest first, which serves me well (I do pick off a Big Book for a dining table read and a paperback for bed and bus), but there is always a Pile of books in series (including ones where I have read up to a certain point and then have another, later, book, but haven’t yet read the ones in between), blocks of books by certain authors and the odd one I’m reading bit by bit. You can see these on the middle shelf of this Horror Photo.

Well, I’m doing quite well with that. I removed the poetry book I forgot to read in 2014 for the WW1 anniversary, I’ve read a few of the Indriðason crime novels, I found that I like Debbie Macombers that are part of series but am not so worried about the standalones (they’re staying in the special collection for the moment, though), I found I couldn’t be bothered with the Tea Shop mysteries I’d been saving up, and I managed to make myself read these two, which are in series but I haven’t read the books in between! So the Pile is now much smaller, in fact only one shelf tall, AND has the 3rd and 4th Dorothy Richardson “Pilgrimage” volumes on it. Result!

Earlene Fowler – “Sunshine and Shadow”

(BookCrossing October 2007)

Whew – for someone who reads her TBR in order and is shocked when she’s a year behind, it was shocking to find I’ve had this since October 2007!! I was reading them in order around then and later on (I last read one in September 2010), but I have missed a few, and I was struggling to recall the history of the characters. Although it’s obvious I have missed some events in the series, my memory is so hazy that it doesn’t really matter.

This one featured flashbacks to the early years of Benni’s first marriage, centring around her relationship with the author of some children’s books she loved then and now. Benni gets herself targeted by thugs, seemingly connected to her husband Gabe’s old police buddy coming to town and then getting himself killed, and she and he both fret about not being able to protect their loved ones. Meanwhile, their marriage is recovering from something [that I’ve missed[ and her grandma’s new marriage is causing trouble all round.

A decent read, but I don’t feel the need to collect the rest and feel I can say goodbye to this series now.

Jennifer Chiaverini – “The Aloha Quilt”

(BookCrossing 22 March 2014)

Not so big a delay on this one. I did love this Elm Creek Quilts series originally, but again I think it’s been too long (I last read one of these in April 2009). This one is fairly standalone in that it deals with Bonnie’s trip to Hawaii to help her friend Claire set up a quilt camp. But she can’t travel far enough to avoid the machinations of her soon-to-be-ex-husband … unfortunately, I wasn’t really invested in the characters, so I found the detail of the family battles a bit tedious. There was also a lot of stuff about the history of Hawaii, which was a bit bolted-on – she does do her research and the stuff about the special Hawaiian quilts was interesting, but it was a bit uneven and hard to persist with. I’ll have to review the other volumes and check I still want to keep them!


Katys pony summerI’ve only acquired two books so far this month, which means that the Pile is actually living on my top, proper TBR, bookshelf (win, again). In fact, I don’t seem to have acquired many at all this year, although I do appear to have won Ali’s giveaway for Virginia Woolf’s “Kew Gardens“, which is very handy as I don’t have any of Woolf’s short stories for the next bit of the Woolfalong.  This little gem – “Katy’s Pony Summer” – came courtesy of the author and I’ll be reviewing it next week so I can include links to buy it as it’s not out quite yet. More adventures of Katy and her Exmoor ponies and a really lovely read!

Attila the Stockbroker argument's yardMy other confession is buying a copy of the marvellous punk poet Attila the Stockbroker’s autobiography, “Arguments Yard”. I last saw  him perform in the Very Early Nineteen-Nineties with my friend Sarah at university, and so we were chuffed to find he was performing at local venue the Kitchen Garden Cafe and went along together (we were rather shocked to find that, although he seemed EXACTLY THE SAME, he was in fact 30 when we last saw him, way younger than we are today!). Anyway, we both bought copies and had them signed, and I think I’ll be promoting it up the TBR so we can read it together.

I’m currently still reading the lovely biog of Roy Jenkins and I’ve managed to get myself started on the next volume of the Dorothy Richardsons, “Interim”. It seems slightly less disjointed than the last one, although I seem to have got a bit confused as to who’s a sister and who’s a friend. I’ve fallen sadly behind on the #Woolfalong but there will be a 2-month period when I won’t be exploring biographies of her, as I have read quite a lot already (although I do have A Writer’s Diary to re-read) so hopefully I’ll get there. They’re waiting for me on my Kindle …

Well, THAT was a mismatch – cosy mystery, quilting chick lit, a children’s book and the autobiography of a leftie football fan. Typical reading of mine, though …

How are you all doing? Have you missed me?