I’ve had to cope with a self-imposed reading ban for the last couple of nights. Again. By Friday I had 5-6 book reviews to do and so didn’t let myself open another book until at least half were done.
I’d had a pretty good week though so still got through four books. #sortof
Books read last week
I started the week with Chris Tsiolkas’s Merciless Gods, which I put aside to read Jan Burke’s Case Closed. Both comprised short stories so were easy to get to in bits and pieces.
As planned I read We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler – which I loved; and then I tackled The Bishop’s Wife by Mette Ivie Harrison, which had been sitting in my NetGalley ‘to read’ shelf for months.
I’ll review The Bishop’s Wife down the track but – after a slow start – it really sucked me in!
I reviewed Case Closed in Goodreads only – as it only featured one new short story and three which had been published previously. I published my review of We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves on the blog and gave it a 4.5-5 star rating (a rarity for me!). I also published my review of Eden by Australian crime writer Candice Fox. I really enjoyed it and am hoping to read her debut novel Hades.
I also posted a review for Jack Fredrickson’s Silence the Dead, a book I read ages ago and isn’t due out in the US (or Oz it seems) for a while. It’s already out in the UK however and was a solid 3.5 star book.
As for Merciless Gods… I really don’t know what to say. Tsiolkas writes well. A few other Aussie book bloggers and I had some conversations about the book. He sets out to shock, that’s for sure. In fact, I get the sense he tries too hard. #possibly
I’m actually pretty #meh about that sort of stuff so the sexuality and frank topics didn’t worry me. I only got through about 110 pages before giving up because each story I completed felt kinda pointless. I know there’ll be many who disagree – indeed there are a lot of very positive reviews in Goodreads – but I ended up deciding life was too short and there were other things I’d prefer to be reading. I won’t post a review in this blog and am still working out what I want to say about the book in Goodreads. At the moment the draft of my non-review is ridiculously long (over 500 words) and far too sarcastic!
I also wrote about an amazing dinner I had on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast when out for my sister-in-law’s birthday celebrations. The pork belly fairy floss was… to die for! I also exercised for the first time in… well…. possibly more than a year, so after that one workout I wondered if… I was skinny (or fit?!) yet? 😉
On Saturday I went to a ‘coffee and chat’ session in a local bookstore to hear Australian author Inga Simpson talk about her writing (and novels). I bought a copy of Inga’s latest novel, Nest and am looking forward to reading that shortly.
And finally – after two pitiful NaNoWriMo writing weeks I came back strongly on the weekend in an attempt to get back on track. I’m nowhere where I’d hoped to be, but am up to 38,249 words; with only a week to go to make it to 50,000.
This week’s reading agenda
I’m planning to read Nest as mentioned above and then my plans are a bit up in the air, as none of the other books I have will be published until January 2015 or later. I’ve got a couple of extra requests in for novels, so am hoping they’ll arrive in the meantime for my reading pleasure.
I’ve mentioned before that I rarely receive hard copy books, but this week I was very excited to receive this (below) from Hachette Australia. Unfortunately I can barely answer any of the questions despite my childhood love of Enid Blyton (and particularly of The Famous Five), so I might need to bone up on that series first!
What’s on your agenda – reading or otherwise?
Linking again with Sheila from the Book Journey.