Here are my favourite fiction books from this year. (Note that not all of these were published this year, that’s just when I read them.)
The following are abridged reviews; where there’s a longer version on the blog, I’ve linked to it. Blurbs are either from the back of the book, or from Amazon. (more…)
Most of my novel reading is crime / psychological thrillers, with a hefty dose of chick lit, plus what I guess you’d call drama / literature thrown in. However I think it’s good to read a range of books, including some from outside your comfort zone. I also try to vary my books by country and continent, making sure to read things that are outside of my own personal experience.
Sometimes this works really well and I find new books to love. Sometimes it works less well and I find myself trying very hard to like a book that just doesn’t speak to me. (more…)
Part of me doesn’t really get why YA is a thing. I think the categorisation can put some people off, because they look at the books and decide they’re for teenagers, and therefore not relevant or of interest to adults. I disagree.
I enjoy reading a good YA novel as much as I enjoy reading a novel written for an adult audience, and I’ve read a few recently so I thought I’d give a run-down and a couple of recommendations. (more…)
Based on several things that have happened this year, I’ve been focusing my mind on doing more academic stuff in 2018. My psychology research has taken a backseat over the past couple of years, but I’d like to revive it. So currently my reading lists partly reflect that desire; there are several projects I’d love to work on, and I’m doing a bit of reading around each one to see which would be best to work on next.
An interesting initiative from Head of Zeus publishing brings us Apollo: a collection of books that might have been known as classics, if the fashions of the times hadn’t relegated them to relative obscurity.
The idea is to give older works a new lease of life, and release them to an audience who otherwise almost certainly wouldn’t have read them.
Over the weekend, I picked up two of them – The Stone Angel by Margaret Laurence, and The Hungry Grass by Richard Power – and took a look.
These days I tend not to listen to many albums, at least not one track after another on repeat, the way I used to when I had cassette tapes and then CDs.
Now that Spotify is in my life, most of my music is organised into playlists with titles like “Fuck Yeah”, “Mother-Friendly Playlist”, “Leave Me Alone”, “Work Fucking Harder”, and so on.
But from time to time there’s still an album that captures me enough to make me want to listen to it all the way through, and then listen again, and then buy the CD to make sure I definitely have it forever.
Here are some of my favourite albums throughout my life.
I was discussing favourite childhood books with a friend the other day, and we got onto the subject of classics. “I loved The Mill on the Floss“, I told her, “and I was worried I wouldn’t like it when I reread it again a couple of years ago, but it was as wonderful as ever.”
“Hang on,” she replied, “The Mill on the Floss was required reading in Preliminary Honours in 1961. You were a precocious brat.”
Yes, yes I was.