The phrase ‘January sales’ has never excited me. You will never find me in those queues of who camp outside shops in the early hours of Boxing Day waiting for the doors to open on the incredible bargains inside. In fact I try not to set foot in shops if I can help it until January is well and truly over.
But I confess that I have been on a bit of a buying spree in the last week. I blame this on the weather. Torrents of rain day after day creating rivers on the road surfaces and lakes in my garden where there is supposed to be grass. Because its been unseasonably warm for the last two months, the daffodils have started to flower way earlier than normal. The poor things must be wondering what’s hit them and shouldn’t they just go back to sleep? Can’t say I blame them. All I want to do is snuggle up in front of the fire. Its at times like this hibernation begins to sound attractive.
To console myself I indulged in some online book shopping. Last year was the first time I’d read anything under the Pereine Press imprint (White Hunger) by Aki Ollikainen. It was a delight to the senses from the minute I saw the tastefully understated cover to the quality of the paper and of course the writing. I started 2016 with a hankering for more. As Pereine say, these are collectors items. Arriving soon I hope will be the first batch from their back catalogue to enrich my reading of literature in translation:
- Portrait of the Mother as a Young Woman by Friedrich Christian Delius. This is the third book published by Pereine in 2010 as part of their Female Voices theme.
- The Blue Room by Hanne Orstavik published in 2014 in the Coming of Age series
- The Murder of Halland by the Danish author Pia Juul. Pereine number 8 came out in 2012
- Stone in a Landslide by Maria Barbal. Published in 2010, this is Pereine number 2 and is the first English translation of a Catalan classic.
- Under The Tripoli Sky by Kamal Ben Hameda, a coming of age novel set in Libya before the Gaddafi era
- Periene number 5 is Tomorrow Pamplona by the Dutch author Jan van Mersbergen
Now you’d think that little haul would be enough to satisfy anyone’s retain therapy needs. But not a bit of it. A few other acquisitions mysteriously made their way into the Booker Talk household this week. Namely The Daughter of Time and The Franchise Affair, both by Josephine Tey. She’s a Scottish author who wrote detective stories from the 1930s to her death in 1952. A new biography of her has just been released and reading to review of that last week convinced me she’s someone I’d like to get to know.
I’m not going to read any of these new purchases until at least May however because having agreed to join the Triple Dog Dare I’m going to spend the first four months of the year just reading what was already on my bookshelves come December 2015. But hey, none of these need more than a cosy shelf to sit on until they’re ready to be taken down and opened.
What have you all been buying lately?