Tuesday, April 23, 2013

And I'm baaaaack!

Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear. . . . this is not a good year for my reading blog. Not at all.

I have been keeping up over at Materfamilias Writes, and if you've checked in there at all, you'll know that the last few months have been difficult ones for me, with my mother dying (cancer) on Easter Sunday. Between helping care of her, being bowed down by sorrow, and trying to keep up with work responsibilities, writing about my reading quickly dropped off my list.

In fact, I found myself unable to read much at all. Never before have I felt such a strong aversion to reading anything intellectually demanding -- I could almost feel, physically, a giant, clear, hands-pushing-back gesture being executed by my mind or brain or whatever creates that inner voice we can only ignore for so long. . . .

I'm getting back into gear now. Once my end-of-term marking is done, I hope to dig into Kate Atkinson's Life after Life and Anne Carson's Red Doc> very soon. Meanwhile, I've begun Fred Vargas' The Ghost Riders of Ordebec. Very satisfying.

A quick list of the light reading I've done over the past couple of months:
Martin Walker's The Dark Vineyard, one of Walker's Bruno, Chief of Police series of mysteries set in rural St. Denis, France. Very enjoyable, and I'll be sure to read others in the series.

Maeve Binchy's A Week in Winter. She wrote so well, and so lovingly and observantly about humans with all their foibles, did Binchy, and of course offered such a sense of that seductive Irish land (and sea-)-scape. I hadn't read her for years, but this novel was the perfect escape from my cares.

Tana French. In the Woods. French sets her mysteries in Ireland, but the scenery is not nearly as cosy as Binchy's! I've recently discovered this writer and will definitely be seeking out more from her.

Alan Bradley. A Red Herring Without Mustard. This series demands nothing from its readers but a willingness to be entertained and amused, delighted, in fact, by young Flavia who is one of the more enterprising heroines you are likely to meet. If you haven't read any of these books yet, you're in for a treat.

Teresa Solona. A Not so Perfect Crime. Also part of a mystery series, this novel features twin brothers whose family and friends don't know they're related, adding to the intrigue. I read it because it's set in Barcelona and I love being able to wander a city's streets through fiction before I do so in real life. Satisfying for that reason and for the mystery's plot and characters as well.

Now let's hope it doesn't take me quite so long before I post again here. Meanwhile, I'm always glad to learn of great titles from you. What have you been reading?

1 comment:

  1. My worries have been very much less difficult than yours, but nevertheless reducing my intellectual capacity/interest/fortitude. I've been reading mostly 'easy' in the last few weeks - Barbara Kingsolver's Flight Behaviour, Kate Atkinson's Life after Life, plus the first two Flavia novels (the combined recommendations of you and my daughter!), the entire Harry Hole series by Jo Nesbo (a bit same-y by the last one), and the first half of the 3rd Game of Thrones book. So, yup, nothing that requires any mental energy. But something to look forward to after a long day ... Must rouse myself to greater efforts some time soon.

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