Thursday, August 21, 2014

Library Loot & a reading update

Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire @ The Captive Reader and Linda @ Silly Little Mischief that encourages bloggers to share the books they have checked out from the library.

I returned home after 10 days away to a pile of unread library books most of which were already, or very near to being, overdue. I decided to take most of them back and only renew the three I really wanted to read.

Vita Sackville-West's Sissinghurst - this is a beautiful book packed full of gorgeous photographs - I know I will love it and refuse to return it unread.

The Headmaster's Wife by Thomas Christopher Greene - more about this one below.

We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler - the only title on the Booker longlist I felt drawn towards reading.

To these I added...

Thursday's Children by Nicci French - the latest in this series featuring psychotherapist Frieda Klein has her returning to the Suffolk coastal town of her childhood. Should be good bedtime reading

This Is Not A Novel by Jennifer Johnston -  'only Imogen believes that her brother did not drown thirty years ago.'

Time Present and Time Past by Deirdre Madden - when Fintan Buckley develops an interest in old autochrome photography, strange things start to happen.'

I was wandering the shelves with my little green notebook when I saw these last two authors written at the top of a page. No book titles with them and I have no idea why I wrote them down. After seeking their books out I found they are both set in Dublin and are by Irish authors. They are also both barely over 200 pages long which suits me right now as I'm having difficulty settling on what to read and staying concentrated on it.

I finished reading Jane's Fame last night but am putting Emma aside until another time.

I read The Headmaster's Wife over the weekend and enjoyed it very much. I thought it sounded like a psychological thriller but was completely wrong. This book doesn't belong anywhere near a crime/thriller shelf. It's written in short, rather terse sentences and the author really builds the tension in the first half while the reader feels an increasing unease and uncertainty without knowing why. The narrator changes halfway through from the headmaster to his wife and the answers start to reveal themselves.

The headmaster teaches English and loves the Russian classics - Turgenev is mentioned several times which I take as a sign from the book fairy as to where to go next. My Classics Spin book is Fathers and Sons by Ivan Turgenev and with several reading events in September I think it would be a good idea if I read this next week. It also has only 200 pages for which I'm very thankful - the spin definitely worked in my favour.



  1. I am trying to cut down on the number of library books I bring home, because I don't end up reading very many of them. But I keep finding new ones that looks so interesting that I can't resist them. The books you list are new to me, I look forward to hearing more about them.

    1. I'm glad I'm not the only one who does this! I can never resist a cover I haven't read.

  2. I just put We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves on hold at the library. I look forward to hearing what you think.

    1. It's interesting although I don't see it as a Booker winner.

  3. I've been eyeing off the Sissinghurst at work.
    WAACBO has had interesting reviews, but I agree, I'm not sure it is a Booker winner.

    1. Sissinghurst is lovely especially if you're a gardener. Not gushing about WAACBO.

  4. I often bring home more than I can read -- I'm trying to read now an enormous stack right now. My nephew loves to come to the library as my chaperone and try to limit how many new books I pick up. Meanwhile I try to sneak more books into his pile.