Sunday, 31 May 2015

What I've read this month (May)

Two trips away, to Wiltshire and then camping in Hastings, plus an illness has meant that blogging hasn't been a priority this month. To be honest I'm giving myself a little break, over two years of regular posting has left me feeling burnt out, and as I began to see it more as a chore than a hobby, the quality of the content was suffering. 

Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald, Therese Anne Fowler, hardback, photo, book cover, UK, book, review
I'm going to Istanbul on Thursday, so my hiatus is going to carry on for at least another week. Hopefully when I return I'll have the time and motivation to start posting regularly again. 

Anyway, here's what I've read this month-    
  1. Robin Hobb, Golden Fool
  2. Therese Anne Fowler, Z; A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald
  3. Chibunda Onuzo The Spider King's Daughter
  4. Lauline  Paull, The Bees 
  5. Rene Denfeld The Enchanted 
  6. Anthony Doer All the Light we Cannot See (I was 2 chapters from the end when this was mistakenly taken back to the library) 
There wasn't a dud among this month's books. The weakest was The Spider King's Daughter, and that was still readable. it's sparse writing style just meant it was slightly confusing sometimes about what was going on, but it was still interesting. I know very little about Lagos, so it was good to find out more more about the city and Nigerian culture. 

Most of these books are deserving of a full blog post to themselves. The Bees - who would have thought that a novel about a hive would be so gripping? Yes it is about actual bees, but it is so much more than that,  it is a dystopian novel about oppressive regimes and power structures. I was cheering on Flora 717 just as hard as I did Katniss or Offred. 
picture source

The Enchanted is almost Kafkaian. A novel set on death row, it is psychological tract on criminal responsibility, mitigation and the American justice system. Odd, but provoking. 

I devoured Z in a day. If you haven't got a holiday book sorted yet, you may want to add this to your pile. A fictionalised account of Zelda Fitzgerald, the 1920's 'It girl' married to one of America's most famous classic writers, F. Scott. The real Zelda was complex, infuriating and glamorous, and this characterisation shines just as bright.

All the Light we Cannot See would probably be my monthly top pick - but alas due to a mix up I haven't finished it yet- so it may well have a poor ending! I'm betting it doesn't though. Books about World War II are available in abundance, but rarely are they this good, or this original. Once I've got it back from the library (I'm 9th in the queue) I promise to do a full review. 

Actually - once I got down to it, writing this blog was fun, I'm still going to take a break but I'll be back before you know it! xxx

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