Holiday week catch up
Suitcase is unpacked and laundry is in the washing machine. I’ve done a walk along the coastal path taking advantage of a dry morning. Raspberry and white chocolate muffins are cooling off ready for a little afternoon tea indulgence. So now I needn’t feel guilty about spending some time with a catch up on the blog about the last week.
I expected to get a lot of reading done while we took a mini holiday in Dorset but it didn’t quite work out that way because the weather was much nicer than expected. Lucky us for picking one week when the clouds parted and we saw the sun. Everywhere looks more attractive under a blue sky but this part of England certainly knows how to sparkle in sunshine. So we got out our walking shoes and explored. Of course I took a book with me in my sturdy rucksack but darn it, my eyes kept getting diverted by all the scenery around me. That was when they were not closed for a quick nap due to the effects of all the fresh air.
One book I did read was the rather odd but mesmerising Booker long listed title The Many by Wyl Menmuir. It’s set in a fishing village somewhere in Cornwall so not far along the coast from Poole, a harbour town and fishing port where we were staying. It was rather sobering reading about the fictitious village whose livliehood is threatened by pollution and then to look out onto the lobster pots and fishermen in Poole who are still trying to make a living from the sea. Beyond the dangers posed to our coastal heritage I’m still trying to think what what the message of this book is, but an exchange with Jen at The Readers Room pulled me up short. I thought of a dream sequence as a foretaste of what happens to Timothy one of the two main characters in the future. Jen suggests it’s actually a recollection of what happened to him and provides the reason why he moves into a derelict house in the village. It just shows how elusive this novel can be ….
I also read Harry Potter and The Philosophers’ Stone ready for the Open University course on children’s literature that I’ve signed up to take in October and got a quarter of the way through The Sleeping World, a debut novel from the Spanish author Gabrielle Lucille Fuentes. I had planned this to be part of my Women in Translation month reading but though the theme and setting of 1970s post-Franco Spain was something that interested me, the book was so poorly written I simply couldn’t get through to the end. I’ve now moved on to the far more intriguing All that Man Is by David Szalay which is on the Man Booker longlist this year. He takes nine different men, all at a different stage of their lives, and puts them into a situation in which they have to make a decision that will affect the rest of their life. It’s described as a novel though each story is entirely separate from the rest so they read more like a collection of short pieces to me. It’s a book that slips down very easily so I’ve already got to the half way mark.
In between walking, eating, reading I’ve been playing around with the Feedly feedreader that many people mentioned when I asked for recommendations on a better option than Bloglovin. Feedly is set up to make it easy to find a site, follow it and then group it with other similar blogs into ‘collections’ that you can review as a block. I’ve been migrating some of the feeds I have on Bloglovin over to this new site so you may find an ‘unfollow’ message from me – it’s not that I don’t love you, just moving you into your new home. I’m going to give it a month and then will share with you all how the new tool is going.
So that was my week – no time to catch up on reviews unfortunately so the backlog is creeping up once again. Expect to see a flurry of those next week including my final book for All Virago/All August which also got me to the end of #20booksofsummer.
18 thoughts on “Holiday week catch up”
Oh I’m very interested to hear how you get on with the new tool for reading blogs, from your brief explanation it sounds like it works well.
its working fine so far Cleopatra -just need to pressure test it for a little longer
All that man is sounds delightful. Have to look out for it in the shops.
I just finished it. It reads fairly easily and some of the stories are interesting but overall I felt it was underwhelming
Glad you had a nice holiday! I’ve a copy of The Many to read but haven’t got to it yet. What do you think as to its chances for the shortlist? Fingers crossed for Feedly 🙂
It could make the shortlist. There’s not a lot of competition from what I’ve experienced so far
Hooray – well done for getting in another AVAA and hitting your #20Books target, too! And you’ve been staying in lovely Poole – I have happy memories of summer holidays with my Gran in next-door Bournemouth, and my lovely cousin Martin lives in Poole (and his brother and their mum in Bournemouth) so we’re down there fairly regularly and love it down there still.
Next time you visit Poole, go for a meal at Karma which does Greek/Turkish food.Maybe you already know this place but we found it by accident and loved it
Yes, I’ve been to Karma with my cousins and my cousin’s husband’s niece, it was great, fitted my anti-cholesterol diet perfectly and we got a great welcome!
Wonderful – wish it was closer to our home so I could go more often
I have been leaning to The Many but just bought an absurd number of books – so may leave it for now. It does sound intriguing though.
It’s definitely intriguing. Not going to win the Booker though in my ever so humble opinion.
I also spent a few sunny days on the south coast this week with my mom, who lives in Hampshire right on the border with Dorset. I hope you are able to catch up on your reviews soon – I can sympathise as I am behind too!
the backlog just keeps getting longer and longer so I’m at risk i forget what the book is about and what I thought of it….
I can totally sympathise – I hope you are able to catch up or at least keep on top of it!
I feel like King Canute (the ancient king of England) who thought he could hold back the tide……
I love the sound of the book set in Cornwall, as I became addicted to a Netflix show, Doc Martin, set in a Cornish village. I don’t know if it was a fictional village.
I also remember loving a movie with settings in Cornwall, called The Shell Seekers, based on a Rosamunde Pilcher book.
Sounds like a lovely getaway.
The series is filmed in the village of Port Isaac in Cornwall. You may recognise some of these locationshttps://www.visitcornwall.com/about-cornwall/blogging-cornwall/doc-martin-locations-to-visit