After this last weekend, all I wanted to do was pull the covers over my head. Instead, I headed off to see the grandkids, always cheering, and when I got back home I cuddled up with Stephanie Clifford's Everybody Rise. Now that I'm retired, I've finally found time to get a Public Library membership again, having relied only on the university library for the past few decades. I was pleasantly surprised, that first visit, to find three recently published books, still in shiny new covers. I'd read about Everybody Rise, but probably wouldn't have ended up reading it except for this serendipity, yet it was just what the doctor would have ordered for me, if the doctor knew how healing an afternoon with a book can be.
Here's what I said about it on Instagram
Sebald's After Nature and Austerlitz), but I found myself more in the mood for Joanna Trollope. Yes, her endings are generally a bit too satisfying, but she writes well and with keen insight into character. The novel I picked up was The Other Family and I suspect some of you might enjoy it as well.
But I didn't completely eschew the chewier stuff on those shelves. I also picked up the recent translation (by Carol Janeway) of a mid-20th century Hungarian novel by Sándor Márai, published with the English title Embers. Quick to read, this novel provokes much thought about memory, the past, the long consequences of our actions, class, and so much more. ti or Fischer reviewed it a decade ago in The Guardian.
Definitely in the light reading category, but again, satisfyingly well written and offering me greater understanding of Italy, is Donna Leon's Dressed for Death, another in the fabulous Guido Brunetti series set in Venice.
And to round off the end of my vacation reading, I read Caryl Ferey's mystery Plutôt Crever on the plane home. Mystery novels en Français are a favourite way to practise my French...
Lest you think it's all light reading all the time here, I've just finished Knausgaard's second volume in the My Struggle series, which is anything but. Happily, I balanced it with the latest Simon Serailler mystery by Susan Hill and then read Camilla Gibb's very moving memoir, This Is Happy. But those are all for another post. I hope... Meanwhile, what about you? I see that BuffaloGal has a recommendation for us all in her comment on my Mitford post. Have any of you read that book by Anthony Marra? Or have any comments on the titles I've summed up here? Or on light reading or fiction therapy in general? comments always welcome, as you should know by now.