Monday Reads 27th June
What an odd reading week. I guess with the kid revising for the mock exams, I was mostly being “taught” several subjects to aid their revision. Any questions about ecology or the human heart, the formation of spits or other subjects… well, I am happy to tell you all about it. Thankfully the mock exams are nearly over and so my evening time will be more my own again.
Small Bodies of Water by Nina Mingya Powles
For most of the week, the reading was ok. And by ok, I mean that. As much as I wanted to love this, it was just an ok read for me. I love nature writing, in fact, I would call it a comfort genre with books that I have on my shelves that I will dip in and out off, old favourites. Apart from a few memorable moments, this book is already fading from my memory. It’s not a bad book at all, it’s just not my kind of book. It was too abstract at times, too loose in other moments… sometimes, it’s just hard to explain why a book did or did not work for you as a reader.
A Murder of Crows by Sarah Yarwood-Lovett
A mystery series set around the world of ecologists sounded intriguing. Sadly, this book did not work for me at all and the last third was positively skimmed. I knew early on who the murderer was and had an inkling as to why about 1/3 into the book. However, that was not the issue here. I can enjoy mysteries even when I know who did it. I mean, I frequently re-read favorites, I am not that forgetful that I cannot remember the murderer. No, the issues here were different. For one, I did not like the bit at the beginning of the novel when the main character reflects on her crush on her colleague Adam who is from a British-Punjabi family, and thinks that they could never be together because Adam’s mom wants a good Punjabi wife for him. Jeez. Written from a white author’s perspective it’s just not ok. And if it is to illustrate the main person’s nature, then it’s not flattering, either… The second issue was that there was no red thread in this book, which for a mystery is really weird, but it went all over the place. The main thing though was the main character, super-rich, a bit Bones-like (if you know the TV series) but perhaps with a bit more social skills, and it often felt a bit like “oh, rich people have feelings, too, you know”. I mean, I know that rich people do have feelings, but I prefer my mysteries less Tory party manifesto-ish.
Oh, that was a rant and a half.
365 Ways to Have a Good Day: A day-by-day guide to enjoying a more successful, fulfilling life by Ian Sanders
Now, this was probably the surprise of the week. I did not hate it. I did not love it, but I did not hate it. Some things, I actually thought were good ideas. Yeah, a lot of male privilege on display, I would like to see the average mother try and implement a lot of these (and fail) but out of the three, this was kinda the best.
Confessions of a Bookseller (The Diary of a Bookseller #2) by Shaun Bythell
Relistened to that. I am sure that one of the customers that is unflatteringly described in the book is me. Which is fine, because it makes me laugh every time.
The Stardust Thief (The Sandsea Trilogy #1) by Chelsea Abdullah
Hooked on this one right now. Can’t wait for bedtime, which is really a very good sign.
Blood Legacy: Reckoning with a Family's Story of Slavery by Alex Renton
I started this yesterday, it’s going to be my lunchtime book. (This is a book I exclusively read during lunchbreaks, waiting for dinner etc.) And so far this is absolutely brilliant non-fiction.
Divide: The relationship crisis between town and country by Anna Jones
Not even started this one. I said I would, but did not. I think I don’t want my favourite cookery books being ruined…
Wicked Enchantment Selected Poems by Wanda Coleman
A selection of poetry. Always like a bit of poetry. Very keen to read this. Coleman was a US poet who wrote poems about poverty and living on the edge. This collection is meant to be a “best of” I suppose since she passed away in 2013. I had looked through the collection and the prose poem “Beaches. Why I Don’t Care For Them” instantly stood out.
The Bequest by Joanna Margaret
A mystery that had me with the words “Gothic” and set in “Scotland, Italy, and France.” Please be good. Just be good, ok, little book?
That’s it, hope you have a lovely week, and let me know if you are reading anything good.