Snapshot June 2016

Hello JuneJune 1 was a momentous day at work as the company for whom I work was aquired by a much bigger corporation. We’ve been working on the communications around this for six months so it was a relief to get to the end of yesterday without any glitches. By the time I got home however I had zero energy stores left to even think what I was reading on the first of the month.

I can’t imagine however that anyone but me is bothered in the slightest degree that my snapshot of the month is a day late….

Recently Finished

I finished a run of highly enjoyable novels (The Gathering by Anne Enright, Rites of Passage by William Golding and The Woman Next Door by  Yewande Omotoso) I went into a dip with Nina Bawden’s The Ice House.  This was published by Virago in 1983 in their Modern Classics series as a novel about a friendship between two girls that lasts the decades from early childhood but is threatened by an act of deception. It started well but about two thirds of the way through I began to lose interest. It’s the third of Bawden’s novels I’ve read. A Little Love, A Little Learning was the first – and by far the best. Next up was The Solitary Child, an early work which I thought very lacklustre. The Ice House fell somewhere in the middle. Maybe I just need to choose more careful next time.

Currently reading 

Having taken the plunge and joined the 20 Books of Summer Challenge (I’ve opted for the gentler option of 10 books), I’m delighted that the first book – This Must be the Place – is a delight. Maggie O’Farrell is one of those authors that you can buy with a high degree of confidence that between the covers will be some laser-eyed observations about life, emotions and relationships. With other authors that could send alarm signals about pretentiousness but with O’Farrell there is no BS factor, just a darn good story told usually in fragments.  This Must be the Place is little short of a delight. It leaps across multiple continents, decades and people as it gives a portrait of a marriage and decisions that could put it in jeopardy. The only challenge in reading this book is that I’m reluctant to put it down at the end of the evening and go to sleep.

 

About BookerTalk

What do you need to know about me? 1. I'm from Wales which is one of the countries in the UK and must never be confused with England. 2. My life has always revolved around the written and spoken word. I worked as a journalist for nine years then in international corporate communications 3. My tastes in books are eclectic. I love realism and hate science fiction and science fantasy. 4. I am trying to broaden my reading horizons geographically by reading more books in translation

Posted on June 2, 2016, in Irish authors and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 26 Comments.

  1. Sounds like a great start to the summer and congrats on the successful acquisition!

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  2. Happy to read that ending note! I’ve heard so much about O’Farrell… I’ll get to her one day. Regarding the Bawden, one out of three isn’t so bad, in the average stakes 🙂

    I get antsy if I don’t meet my self-imposed time for posting, so I know what you mean. It’s silly, and you’re right, it’s really ourselves who worry, but at the same time I suppose having those thoughts of lateness keep us on track.

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  3. We have enough pressure at work, no need to add some to your blog life. Looking forward to see how the 20 Books of Summer Challenge goes.

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    • That’s certainly true Emma. I go through periods where i have zero energy for the blog. How you manage to keep up your reading and blogging levels of activity I have no idea.

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      • I’m like you, sometimes I have no energy to switch on the computer at night and blog.
        That’s why I don’t read as many reviews from other bloggers as I’d like.
        I have a rather demanding corporate job, a husband, kids and me & my reading. I’m juggling.

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  4. Fellow O’Farrell fan here. I just won a copy of This Must Be the Place, so I am happy to hear that it’s good.

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  5. Glad you’re enjoying the O’Farrell. I agree she’s always a safe bet.

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  6. piningforthewest

    I so agree with you about Maggie O’Farrell although I haven’t read This Must be the Place yet.

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  7. Nina Bawden seems to divide readers. I generally like her books but I have been slightly underwhelmed by her earlier work. Like a lot of fairly prolific writers her books vary in quality.

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  8. I am pleased to hear you made great start to the 10 Books of Summer challenge with your first book – I’ve also made a great start to the challenge with The Gospel of Loki by Joanne Harris 🙂

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  9. I read Afternoon of a Good Woman which I found only so-so.

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  10. Ha! Ha! I think you’re correct! We’ll all be happy to read your post, no matter what day it is posted! 🙂 I trust the changes at work will be good ones! While I love books that hold my interest so much that I want to just keep on reading, regardless of the late hour and the fact that I must get up in the morning, but…typically I stay up too late and regret it that very next morning! 🙂 I have never read Maggie O’Farrell, but have several of hers on my TBR listing. Which one would you recommend I start with?

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