April Reading

I’m a bit ashamed of the size of this month’s book pile. In my defence, some are charity shop finds, some are re-reads, some second hand but some are undeniably new. Sorry (not really) 
I did get some library books out but I took them straight back next day because they were rubbish. It’s my own fault, I am too much of a sucker for self help books. At least, knowing my weakness means that, wherever possible, I try them out at the library first. So now I know why French Women Don’t Get Fat – because they hardly eat anything and the reason they hardly eat anything is because of the recipes in the French Women Don’t Get Fat Cookbook. Bleugh. 
Anyhoo. Some of the above I have read already “A Glass of Blessings” is a re-read. I am like Phillip Larkin (a sentence that I never thought I would write) and I would rather read a Barbara Pym novel than a Jane Austen. Controversial that but Pym is a top notch novelist for me.
In the Company of Women is a lovely book of photos of female entrepreneurs and artists. This means it is an important feminist tract and also pretty enough to live on our lounge table covering the bit I made go a bit funny by putting a hot drink on it.
I have looked out a couple of books from the Golden Age of British Detectives. I think I have done all the Wimseys now. So I am trying Margery Allingham and Michael Innes. 
I found Little Women in the hospice shop. I am a bit suspicious of anyone who hasn’t read and loved Little Women. Even Aged Parent thought it was good and she openly doesn’t like anything vaguely heartwarming. 
Robert Harris’s Fatherland is a thriller set in Germany after they have won the Second World War. I thought it was excellent – did exactly what it was supposed to. It is, as they say, a page turner.
Prodigal God is my first read by the theologian Tim Keller. I have only just started it. There doesn’t seem to be many laughs so far. I know. I know. Not everything needs to be funny etc etc. I will give it my full attention.
Write Away is a book on writing by Elizabeth George. I could say that she is one of my favourite writing teachers or I could tell you the truth and say I thought I was buying a writing book by Elizabeth Goudge – who I really like. Note to self – wear glasses when charity shop cruising. 
Lastly, I am in the middle of The Trouble with Goats and Sheep. This is currently a best seller. I am about a third of the way through and it is fantastic. It’s about someone’s disappearance in the Summer of 76. Boiling hot if you remember. Two little girls set out to sort out what has happened by finding God – on their street. It is beautifully written with sentences that roll around your mind. 
So there you are then. Off to do a bit of reading.



  1. April 3, 2017 / 9:32 pm

    Nice selection. Will you continue with Young/Good Wives after Little Women?
    Elizabeth Goudge, (not George though I like her books also) has been a favourite ever since I read The Little White Horse when I was about 10.

    • April 4, 2017 / 9:51 am

      I read somewhere that Little White Horse is JK Rowling's favourite children's book. That's a good idea about continuing. I know I read Good Wives but haven't done Little Men I don't think.

    • April 5, 2017 / 7:51 pm

      Yes, I have a vague memory of having a compendium of her books as a child.

  2. April 3, 2017 / 10:20 pm

    I love Little Women. They did Fatherland on Radio 4 Extra. It was brilliant. And yes, Pym is better than Austen. Still haven't read Goudge. Keep meaning to. I remember 76 very clearly. I was doing degree finals. My mate Dan went and sat outside after lunch to do some reading. He fell asleep and got sunstroke. Some French women DO get fat. I saw them when I was riding pillion in Normandy. I am currently between books. Feel I ought to read something worthy as it's Lent, but not properly motivated.

    • April 4, 2017 / 9:55 am

      I remember the summer of 76 as well. We thought it might never rain again. When I described getting water from standpipes, my kids thought that I was making it up. Mind you, when I described how the electricity would regularly be turned off, during the three day week, they just couldn't get their heads around that at all!

  3. April 6, 2017 / 7:14 am

    Hahaha – I read "Elizabeth Goudge" first time, too! I love Margery Allingham, and Michael Innes. I think Lord Peter Wimsey morphed weirdly from a Loveable Eccentric to a Tortured Soul, in a not very believable way, over the course of several novels. I have a new book to read too, that I think you'd like – but you've inspired me now, I'm going to write a similar thing about books I'm reading (except there are only two; I'm a slow reader), so I'll tell you about it then. x

    • April 6, 2017 / 8:06 pm

      Excellent. Agree with you about Wimsey, his character changed completely. I remember, in one of the later books, that he agonised over sending a man to the gallows. I understood the sentiment but wasn't sure if it worked. It's not really why people read a Wimsey I think.

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