Och! The blue blue sea is a distant memory as I come to terms with the fact that I am back in civilisation, well and truly contactable and connected to all manner of social media which, although with its #drawbacks (!), allows me to catch up with all you lovely folk. I’ve been rather out of the loop of late and Literary Relish has been looking a little quiet so, without further ado…..
Our Scottish holidays are always prime opportunity for the boyfriend and I to get down to some hardcore reading, usually taking an inordinate amount with us (I was actually told off for complaining about the weight of my rucksack this year because, yes, I do insist on taking half of my library with me even if I won’t read it!) What did I read? Not all that much really. Despite the rain that confined us to our camps (and ‘glamps’) for the majority of the week it seems I simply didn’t have the heart to rush things and it was, frankly, a pleasure to partake in some luxurious, completely relaxed reading for once:
Distant Thunder by T D Griggs – Although I wanted to finish this before I left for my hols I didn’t quite manage it, reading the closing chapters in the cosy confines of my sleeping bag. Quite honestly, were I to completely judge a book by its cover and title (which we are all guilty of doing) I would never have picked this book up. Having now been swept away by Griggs’ sumptuous prose and blockbuster narrative I am feeling rather ashamed of myself. A glowing review to follow shortly….
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury – Lucy! You mean you have never read Fahrenheit 451!!? Nooo, I hadn’t (I know). But, now I have and yes I see what all the fuss was about. Truly astonishing stuff.
Gillespie and I by Jane Harris – This is a chunk of historical fiction that has been raved about by many bloggers, Mr Savidge included. As a result, it has been sat on my shelves since I went to see the lovely Miss Harris speak at Waterstones Deansgate back in October 2011. As well as my tendency to let the hoohah die down before I dip in, I suppose I’d been too scared that I’d inadvertently hyped the book up in my own mind and would inevitably end up disappointed. I wasn’t. I was hooked and, well, let’s just say I require some time to let my thoughts settle down.
Wider bookish news has also certainly not passed me by fear not. It’s been an exciting old time of late and I required a break to let myself calm down a tad. With the Manchester Literary Festival looming tantilisingly on the horizon (I’m hoping to get the book group more involved this year after poor planning the last!) a number of more national stories have wet my bibliophilic appetite. Not that I needed any encouragement…
J K Rowling’s outrage at being ‘outed’as début crime author ‘Robert Galbraith’ both delighted me and made me sympathise with her frustration. When all is said and done, however, what a wonderful validation it must have been for her as an author to receive such praise whilst her secret was safe. Now Galbraith’s identity is common knowledge and the book has been thrust into the Bestseller list I will, characteristically, be waiting a few months before picking it up. I always wonder what the big fuss about crime novels is and have decided that Rowling will be my first foray into modern crime fiction. I’m thinking she may lend a more literary flavour that might be right up my street…
It seems that the nasty Twitter trolls have eclipsed what should have been a happy, momentous occasion for women and book lovers everywhere as Jane Austin made it onto the £10 note. Clearly we thought civilisation had taken a step in the right direction when it comes to the acceptance of influential women and their prominence within society. Sadly it seems we may have been mistaken.
The Man Booker 2013 longlist was announced now long ago. Despite being a self-professed book-hoarder/reviewer, as per usual I am feeling that peculiar sensation of excitement and inferiority at the sight of the infamous longlist because, needless to say, I didn’t predict and haven’t read any of them. Instead, I have been prioritising and taking pictures of highland cows… toodlepip!