Friday, May 22, 2009

The Latest Books To The Never Ending TBR Pile Are...

That sounds like a bit of an Oscar Nominations announcement doesn’t it? However I really like seeing the latest books that everyone in the blogosphere is getting and so I thought I would share with you what has been arriving and being purchased of late in The Savidge Reads Towers.

Naturally I have already been back to my new favourite local bookshop in the hunt for bargain books and not come out empty handed. I have managed to pick up two more Orange Prize winners (which I may intermingle with the shortlist as I read it) so I came away with Geraldine Brooks ‘March’ and Linda Grant’s ‘When I Lived In Modern Times’ the latter which, oddly as a prize winner, is quite hard to get hold of. I loved Geraldine Brooks ‘The Year of Wonders’ (which is all about how the plague ended up in a small Derbyshire village – just down the road from my Gran – and how they shut themselves off to save others) so will be interested in this book which is a retelling of the father of the ‘Little Women’, maybe I should read that first? I haven’t read any of Linda Grant before but know she was long listed for the Booker prize last year I think it was, so am intrigued by her and the story of “20-year-old Evelyn Sert who leaves post-war Soho after her mother's death for a new life in Palestine”. I also bought Margery Allingham’s “The Tiger in the Smoke” as many book bloggers have mentioned this classic crime story and also it featured heavily in the wonderful, wonderful ‘The Earth Hums in B Flat” which I read a few weeks ago, as well as Chris Cleave’s ‘The Other Hand’ after Claire Kiss A Cloud was raving about him the other day. Please, please, please do not give any of the storyline away on this one if you comment as it’s meant to be one of those sorts of books!

Arriving from lovely publishers I have had one more of the Orange Short List books as Picador have sent me Ellen Feldman’s ‘Scottsboro’ which I think is the first one I am reading. I received Emily Listfield’s thriller ‘Best Intentions’ all the way from the USA so will be giving that a good read of that in the non to distant future. Atlantic Books sent me a biography (not a book genre I tend to go for but often find I like them more than I think I do) ‘The Life and Times of Harvey Milk, The Mayor of Castro Street’ by Randy Shilts which after the film ‘Milk’ is getting a big re-release in a few weeks. Finally, and possibly one that I have been most excited about, the lovely people at Capuchin Books have sent me ‘The Green Hat’ by Michael Arlen which sounds very, very me “Iris Storm, femme fatale, races around London and Europe in her yellow Hispano-Suiza surrounded by romantic intrigue, but beneath the glamour she is destined to be a tragic heroine.” They have also made me one of the ‘blogs we love’ which has thrilled me and I had no idea of until they contacted me. You can see their blog here.

Finally for two books that have actually been sent by the authors themselves. Karen Campbell has sent me a copy of her latest book ‘After The Fire’ which I have not long actually just finished reading and will be raving about very soon, Kate Atkinson is a fan so I knew I would be and I wasn’t wrong. Karen has a very interesting story as an author and I will be divulging more over the weekend! Rosy Thornton sent me a copy of her latest book ‘Crossed Wires’ which arrived yesterday and is all about “the story of Mina, a girl at a Sheffield call centre whose next customer in the queue is Peter, a Cambridge geography don who has crashed his car into a tree stump when swerving to avoid a cat. Despite their obvious differences, they've got a lot in common -- both single, both parents, both looking for love. Could it be that they've just found it?” It’s also described as “an old-fashioned fairy tale” which sounds quite me. Phew with all that I better get reading…

Have you read any of these or any books by these authors do let me know! Also what’s the latest book that you bought?

12 comments:

Teresa said...

Nice array of books. I read Ellen Feldman's The Boy Who Loved Anne Frank a few years ago and liked it a lot, so I'll be interested to hear if Scottsboro is any good.

I've also read March, which I thought was only okay. I think I'm too much of a purist to enjoy many of these reinterpretations of beloved classics. They always tempt me, but I often end up annoyed with them. Lots of others enjoyed March, though, so don't go my me on that one. :-)

Sandy Nawrot said...

I just received Rosie's Crossed Wires as well. I have to finish my wonderful but chunky book about the German resistance in WWII, and then a book tour book, then I'm going to read it. It looks great!

claire said...

I haven't read even one of these, but would love to read a Geraldine Brooks and a Linda Grant someday..

Candy Schultz said...

Come on Simon you don't ever want that TBR pile to end. No one does really.

The Margery Allingham is very good. I just reread it a year or so ago. Linda Grant's The Clothes on Their Backs was longlisted. It was fairly good. I read Brooks' People of the Book. That was incredible. You have a lot of wonderful adventures here in this pile.

I finished The Little Stranger. I was not impressed. I've not read anything else of hers but I loved Tipping the Velvet when it was on television. So maybe you should concentrate on the Orange list anyway.

David (dsc73277) said...

I really liked "Crossed Wires", nor am I alone: seven out of the nine people who have rated it on Librarything.com have given it at least 4 out of 5 stars, and the other two ratings were both respectable 3s. I like gentle tales, books about finding hope amidst despair, and books about academics who are slightly out of touch with the real world and Crossed Wires is all of these things.

The last book I bought was last summer's edition of Granta focusing on nature writing. Does that count as a book? It looks like a quality paperback, would have cost more than the average paperback if I had bought is new (which I didn't), but describes itself as a magazine. Then, today at the library, I picked up George Eliot's Amos Barton; Marc Dugain's The Officers Ward, a first world war novel translated from the French by Howard Curtis; the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize winning The Armies by Evelio Rosero; and Richard Askwith's Feet in the Clouds. The latter is a book about fell running which may seem like a strange choice for someone who has never been good at any sport, but I do like the hills and thought it might be interesting to read about the type of person who has sometimes passed me when ascending or descending at a more moderate pace.

megan said...

I really enjoyed March, despite usually being in the same camp as Teresa about reinterpretations. The construction of character and voice is stunning, and Brooks really knows how to keep you reading.

Kim said...

I knew you would end up back in that bookshop before the month was out (most of us would have done the same, I'm sure).
Haven't read any of your recent bargains, Simon, guess I have some additions to make to my TBR pile. Did find Daphne du Maurier's Rebecca and My Cousin Rachel on my last bookshop visit. Have devoured both and am on the lookout for anything else du Maurier.

Candy Schultz said...

Just thought I'd say - your blog has quickly become one of my very favorites. don't stop.

Karen said...

March and The Other Hand are both very different books but both brilliant - I hope you enjoy them as much as I did!

Savidge Reads said...

Teresa - Very belated reply from me, apologies! I have The Boy Who Loved Anne Frank and am now very much looking forward to it!

Sandy - It will be like a little 'reading together' project!

Claire - I have a feeling one day your wish will come.

Candy - You're right, but I think I might soon need a bigger house for my TBR alone.

David - That many people loving Crossed Wires sounds very promising indeed.

Megan - I am glad that she doesnt ruin the story - I should read Little Women first though shouldnt I?

Kim - You were so right... and I am back of their again tomorrow. Ha!

Candy - That is very very very kind of you!

Karen - High praise from you indeed and that can only be a good thing.

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