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Bookworms 2020

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Old Style MoneySaving
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  • dolly84dolly84 Forumite
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    Just finished re-reading "Fallen Skies" by Phillipa Gregory. It's about the aftermath of WW1 on a middle class family and it's the best novel I've read this year.  I first read it in the early 90s so didn't really remember the story. :)
    A neighbour recommended Phillipa Gregory to me recently, I might give this one a go if I can get hold of it.  Some books have a very different impact on you when you read them again depending on your age and circumstances at the time, some are definitely worth re-visiting.
    I am currently reading "The Beach" by Alex Garland.  Am struggling with it at the moment, but will persevere with it!
    Before that I read "One Moment" by Linda Green and would highly recommend that.
    I read on Kindle, as I find it much easier than holding a book open, as it keeps my hands free.
    I loved The Beach.  I always read physical books and don't go far without one, I do think it makes people look more interesting if they have a book rather than just another person staring at a screen.  That is being said by someone who has never played a computer game, has hardly any apps on her phone and actively avoids all that sort of stuff.

    Debt Free and now a saver, conscious consumer, low waste lifestyler


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  • Ditzy_MitzyDitzy_Mitzy Forumite
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    I am currently reading 'The Talented Mr Ripley' by Patricia Highsmith. Thoroughly recommended, assuming one enjoys the modernist style and a plot that drives forward like a locomotive. Her writing style is spare, almost an invitation to skate across the surface and not to consider what lurks within the depths. If one does, one can almost find oneself empathising with Tom Ripley. But then again, why not? What's the harm in a little bit of bad behaviour, especially when the world is fundamentally rotten. Bleak. Also comes with a generous spoonful of nineteen-fifties glamour: fabulous settings, buildings, clothes, drinks, cars and lashings of snappy dialogue. 
    I also had a go at 'Circe' by Madeline Miller. I wasn't struck, despite it being a brave attempt at engaging the modern reader. For me, the Greek myths exist only to provide fodder for Ray Harryhausen films and artefacts in the British Museum. Sorry for being such a philistine, but I've never been that interested. I had, therefore, high hopes that 'Circe'  might turn me into an enthusiast, but ended up disappointed. Circe is, I understand, insignificant in the scheme of things; a footnote to a seldom read appendix at the back of the big book of myths. Having her narrate the tale is akin to having a police procedural relayed by the girlfriend of the detective inspector's cousin who met said DI once, at a family party, and was provided with a vague account of the crime. One needs to be in the action, not to hear about it from someone stuck at several stages of remove who wasn't there at the time. Plus the style is overly ornate and, in places, imprecise. In an inversion of Highsmith, there's far too much on the surface and precious little underneath. Perhaps read the 'Iliad' or whatever instead - the real thing is always better. 
  • pollypennypollypenny Forumite
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    DianneB said:
    I am finding it hard to concentrate on anything new at the moment so I am reading old favourites but I do have a new copy of Peter Mays 'Lockdown'. Will get MrB to read it first!!


    I'm reading a Peter May, too. The Man with No Face.  It was writing in 1988, but reworked. Nothing like as good quality  eg. He gripped it with his short, stubby fingers.   
    None of my pupils would get away with that.  I've never seen long, stubby fingers. 

    I read my first Dean Koonz. The Eyes of Darkness.  Disappointed there too. Republished to capitalise on and echo covid in some ways. 
    Member #14 of SKI-ers club

    Words, words, they're all we have to go by!.

    (Pity they are mangled by this autocorrect!)
  • elsienelsien Forumite
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    Just finished two:
    Little Eve by Catriona Ward. A  between the wars gothic take on the isolated Scottish island/cult going pear shaped scenario from the point of view of the children then and retrospectively.  A good page turner. 
    And then (and probably not the best time to read it) This is going to hurt by Adam Kay. About his years as a hospital doctor before he reached breaking point. Funny and an indictment of the system, both at the same time.
    Now getting through Margaret Atwood's The Testaments which is as good as anticipated. 

    All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.

    Pedant alert - it's could have, not could of.
  • Charly27Charly27 Forumite
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    So I’ve finished ‘After Julius’ and feel ... sad, unspeakably sad. Her books are beautifully written and observed but this is just not an uplifting read. I’m reading Little House in the Big Woods now which I haven’t read for about 40 years. Hope I enjoy it as much as I did then!
    Proud to be dealing with my debts! DF Nerd # 1475
    Books in 2020 32/60
    #20 in 2020 2/20
    Stitching Animal Patchwork Sampler by The Historical Sampler Company
  • DianneBDianneB Forumite
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    I'm reading a Peter May, too. The Man with No Face.  It was writing in 1988, but reworked. Nothing like as good quality  eg. He gripped it with his short, stubby fingers.   
    None of my pupils would get away with that.  I've never seen long, stubby fingers. 

    I read my first Dean Koonz. The Eyes of Darkness.  Disappointed there too. Republished to capitalise on and echo covid in some ways. 
    I gave up on The Man with No Face at page 35, it just didn't pull me in like his other books. I loved his Lewis Trilogy, the Enzo Files Series, Coffin Road and I thought I could read anything he's written! I also gave up on The China Thrillers but as MrB is now on the last book and couldn't put them down I may have to try again. Having all the time in the world to read used to be my dream so I think I am suffering from lockdown fog!! 
    Just glanced at my nearest bookshelf and got all excited when I saw a book called 'Breads', don't remember buying a bread cookery book, pulled it out to find it's actually 'Breeds' a funny book about dogs! How tastes change  :D

    Slightly bitter
  • dolly84dolly84 Forumite
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    I have finished 'How To Stop Time' by Matt Haig, this was recommended on here a while back and I enjoyed it, it is supposed to be being made into a film by Benedict Cumberbatch.  I am currently half way through 'Of Mice and Men', one page into 'Midnight's Children' and about a third of the way through 'Full Wolf Moon by Lincoln Childs.
    Debt Free and now a saver, conscious consumer, low waste lifestyler


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  • candygirlcandygirl Forumite
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    I'm currently reading The Break, by Marian Keyes.Not my usual thing , but there are some very funny bits in it :)
    "You can't stop the waves, but you can learn to surf"

    (Kabat-Zinn 2004):D:D:D
  • Charly27Charly27 Forumite
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    dolly84 said:
    I have finished 'How To Stop Time' by Matt Haig, this was recommended on here a while back and I enjoyed it, it is supposed to be being made into a film by Benedict Cumberbatch.  I am currently half way through 'Of Mice and Men', one page into 'Midnight's Children' and about a third of the way through 'Full Wolf Moon by Lincoln Childs.
    Thanks dolly84. I have ‘How to Stop Time’ on my Kindle so you may have inspired me to read it. I’ve only read ‘Reasons to Stay Alive’ before, several times and still go back to it.
    I’ve finished Little House in the Big Woods and have started book 2, ‘Farmer Boy’. My how hard was their life? I didn’t remember being so squeamish when I read the descriptions of the hunting and butchering as a young adult however, they respected the natural world and were more in touch with it, of necessity. So I need to get over myself!
    Proud to be dealing with my debts! DF Nerd # 1475
    Books in 2020 32/60
    #20 in 2020 2/20
    Stitching Animal Patchwork Sampler by The Historical Sampler Company
  • dolly84dolly84 Forumite
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    Have finished 'Of Mice and Men', this is one of the 100 books to read before you die, it is a quick and easy read but in all honesty I don't see what all the fuss is about, I just wanted someone to throttle Lennie all the way through.  Grapes of Wrath is on the list too, hope that is better.

    Charly - I know what you mean about hunting, I am vegan and I know that choosing to do that is a luxury, I don't disagree with hunting for survival and know if push came to shove I would do it, I have mixed feelings about eating animals and animal products, on the one hand I think who the bliddy hell do we think we are and on the other I know that so many people rely on the industry for their livelihood, I am a realist I suppose, we should be doing it better and not to excess.
    Debt Free and now a saver, conscious consumer, low waste lifestyler


    Fashion on the Ration 18/66
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