Here are mine – a mixture of carefully selected, re-reads, and gems found in our holiday house. And here’s where we went …
… sit with me and read a little…
The Cruise of the Rolling Junk, F Scott Fitzgerald – I hadn’t heard of this one before, but it’s the story of a road trip he took with Zelda, all the way from Connecticut to Alabama just so she could have peaches. He’d just published his first novel, ‘This Side of Paradise’, and they were young, just 23 and she 19, but already feeling that particular nostalgia that seeps through his novels. For instance, on seeing a young man with cardboard soles, he writes: ‘I was him again – for an instant, I had the good fortune to share his dreams, I who had no more dreams of my own.’
Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Random Riggs – This was a rollicking time travelling adventure fantasy, reminiscent of Neil Gaiman‘s books. I loved the photographs too – and the details of the collections they came from.
Memory Palace by Kunzru Hari – I wanted to read this novella before ‘walking through’ it at the V&A. There were some lovely bits that made me laugh out loud, for instance this definition of Voicemail – ‘A kind of armour made of speech, which managers used to protect themselves from intrusion and assault.’ Made me think about memory too.
The Burgess Boys by Elizabeth Strout – I picked this up because I’d enjoyed Olive Kitteridge so much. She is the master of character, and this books sums up one of the quotes I’d underlined from the Scott Fizgerald book: ‘Show me a hero and I will write you a tragedy.’
Pilgrim at Tinker Creek by Annie Dillard – I’ve read this before and I’ll read it again. If you haven’t already, add it straight away. Particularly if you’re going somewhere to be in nature
Mr Darwin’s Gardener by Kristina Carlson. A Finnish postmodernist novella about Downe Village in the late 1970s. Five hundred times more enjoyable that that sounds! I particularly enjoyed the chapter on a book club when they all finally admit that none of them had read the book!
The Corbenic Poems by Jon Plunkett – I picked this pamphlet up from the Camphill Community shop in Dunkeld and was hooked straight away. A lovely easy style and I look forward to reading more of Jon’s work. His website is here.
What have you read recently?