Wednesday, 2 February 2011

January 2011: Books read

I have been trying (again) to keep a list of books I have been reading this year. Google Docs is very handy for this because I usually have a Gmail tab open on my browser. According to my list I have only read five books so far; one of which I did not finish. 

Here's the guilty list here:

1. The Secret History - Donna Tartt
2. A Week in December - Sebastian Faulks
3. Isabel Dalhouise: The Lost Art of Gratitude  - Alexander McCall Smith
5. The Election - Tom Percotta
6. Dead White Men and other Important People - Ralph Fevre and Angus Bancroft (DNF)

Currently I am chomping my way through Any Human Heart by William Boyd. I confess to being a reading snob and assumed that Boyd's writing catered for a certain market. The covers of his books seemed a tad glossy and I thought they may have been an upmarket blokey version of chick lit. I am glad to report that I am wrong. Any Human Heart follows Logan Mountstuart as he travels through the 1920s at Oxford, 1930s working as a writer, 1940s as his time in the Royal Navy and 1950s/60s working at an art gallery in New York. The novel is written in a journal format and it works very well. At times I almost forget that I am reading a work of fiction.

Need to get back into the habit of writing reviews more often. My OU course encourages this and has a nice little checklist of things to think about. I may not do this for every book but it's a good start.


Bethan. said...

What did you think of A Week In December?

(Female) Opinionated Reader said...

It was a strange book. I enjoyed it yet at times it jarred with me. Obviously Faulks had done a lot of research into the financial industry. But sometimes I got bogged down in the detail and lost interest. It would have worked well as a series of short stories that were linked together. Not sure it worked as a novel. The reality TV show about mental illness did horrify me at times but, alas, I do see that's where that genre of television is heading. Have you read it?

Bethan. said...

I have! I enjoyed it. I loved the train driver and the lawyer guy but couldn't gel with the financial hedge fund fella - I found it near impossible to read/enjoy the waffle about all that!
I think you're right it may have worked better if he'd separated them into smaller works but no matter, it wasn't a complete failure :)