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Archive for the ‘Library Loot’ Category

badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Sharlene from Real Life Reading that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.

Sharlene has the Mr Linky this week.

I’ve been having trouble settling down with a book recently.  I’ve made it 100 or 200 pages into so many books recently only to realise I’m not all that interested in learning how they end.  Rereading has been far more successful – I was absolutely enthralled by A Desperate Fortune, despite having read it several times before, and sped through Home from the Vinyl Cafe – but I long for something new.

Which brings us to this week’s loot.

After reading Weekend at Thrackley earlier this year, I didn’t really have any intention of reading more by Alan Melville.  But the comments to that post were so encouraging about his other books (Quick Curtain and Death of Anton) that I thought I’d give them a try, and throw in one of his plays (Simon and Laura) for good measure.

I’ve already started Quick Curtain and it is wonderful – exactly the kind of fun, absorbing read I needed.

What did you pick up this week?

This post contains affiliate links from Book Depository, an online book retailer with free international shipping.  If you buy via these links it means I receive a small commission (at no extra cost to you).  

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badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Sharlene from Real Life Reading that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.

Have you stocked up on books for Christmas?  I am urgently placing holds, willing everything to arrive by Sunday (the last day my library is open until the 27th) so I have supplies laid in for the holiday break.  I still have my fingers crossed that some long awaited holds will come in before then but these books will keep me well entertained regardless:

Prague Spring by Simon Mawer – Naturally, I’m intrigued by any novel about the Prague Spring.  This sounds like it is focused on outsiders’ perspectives and I’ve been seeing lots of enthusiastic reviews in my favourite publications.

House of Gold by Natasha Solomons – I tried with this one.  I really did.  For years, I’ve felt like Solomons was so close to becoming an author I could really enjoy (her early books – Mr Rosenblum Dreams in English and The Novel in the Viola – had promise but were far from perfect) and I really thought she’d turned the corner.  Her last novel, The Song Collector, was marvellous and I loved every page.  Unfortunately, the magic has not lasted and this tale inspired by the Rothschild family has proved a big disappointment.  I made it halfway through but have given up in disgust.

The Assassination of the Archduke  by Greg King and Sue Woolmans – I’ve borrowed this a few times over the years but never gotten to it.  Assassination might not be everyone’s idea of Christmas reading but I’ve always been interested in Franz Ferdinand and this book has come highly recommended by other history geeks.

Walking to the End of the World by Beth Jusino – Always on the lookout for new travelogues about walking, I was at the top of the hold list for this memoir.

Palaces for the People by Eric Klinenberg – Another favourite topic is the social impact of urban planning so this look at the important role played by shared public spaces sounds excellent.

Falling for London  by Sean Mallen – This memoir of a Canadian journalist’s experiences after landing his dream posting in London is in every shop window I pass these days.  I love any sort of ex-pat memoir but one set in London is particularly alluring.

What did you pick up this week?

This post contains affiliate links from Book Depository, an online book retailer with free international shipping.  If you buy via these links it means I receive a small commission (at no extra cost to you).  

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badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Sharlene from Real Life Reading that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.

I am beyond excited to announce that the new co-host of Library Loot is Sharlene from Real Life Reading!  I love her eclectic reading tastes and have gotten many great recommendations from her over the years.  She is an enthusiastic library user and a talented blogger and I could not be more delighted to have her as co-host.

She will be hosting next week but, for now, on to my loot!

The Cyclist Who Went Out in the Cold by Tim Moore – I love an adventure travelogue and I love books about Eastern Europe so when they are combined life is rather wonderful.  I’ve wanted to read this account of Moore’s cycling trip along the old Iron Curtain since it was first reviewed in the Financial Times, which I now see must have been two full years ago.  Time flies terrifyingly fast.

Czech Refugees in Cold War Canada by Jan Raska – this year marks the 50th anniversary of the largest wave of immigration from Czechoslovakia to Canada (which included my mother).  To coincide with the anniversary, this fascinating new book looks at how the 36,000 Czechs who immigrated to Canada from 1945 to 1989 found their way here and established themselves in their new country.  This is the most absurdly niche book I could imagine, so I doubt it appeals to most of you but I couldn’t be happier to have got hold of it.

Apron Strings by Jan Wong – the daughter of a restaurateur and mother of an aspiring chef, Wong set out on a journey (accompanied by her son) to explore home cooking in three of the world’s great food cultures: France, Italy, and China.  A seasoned journalist, I always find Wong’s writing fascinating and am really looking forward to this.  (Also, if you haven’t read it, her memoir of workplace depression, Out of the Blue, is extraordinarily good and really helpful for understanding both how depression looks – or doesn’t – and how workplaces can improve the support they give their staff.)

The Long Winter by Laura Ingalls Wilder – Jennifer mentioned this last week in her “Books to Read in the Winter” post and I couldn’t resist picking it up again.  Even as a child, I remember thinking it was by far the strongest book in the series but it’s been ages since I last read it.

Christmas on the Island by Jenny Colgan – The most recent book in Colgan’s Mure Island series, this is published as both Christmas on the Island (North America) and Island Christmas (UK).  Colgan’s writing is getting stronger with every book and I’ve really enjoyed that the focus in this series has not stayed fixed on the heroine and her love interest – except to point out the shortcomings of the love interest. (I got really hopeful this was going to be a Little Lady Agency sort of situation, where the seemingly perfect love interest gets kicked to the curb after several books…but now I’m not so sure).  It’s not great literature but is very enjoyable to curl up with on cold nights.

Ghosted by Rosie Walsh – another instance of dual titles: Ghosted for North America and The Man Who Didn’t Call for the UK.  I added this to my list when Sarra Manning included it in her June roundup of books but, to be honest, now that it’s here I’m not quite sure if I’m really interested in it.  But I will give it a try.  That is the luxury that libraries afford us – the chance to try – and reject – as many books as we like, all for free.

Perfect English Townhouse by Ros Byam Shaw – for when reading words is too taxing, I can always fall back on photos of absolutely beautiful homes.

What did you pick up this week?

This post contains affiliate links from Book Depository, an online book retailer with free international shipping.  If you buy via these links it means I receive a small commission (at no extra cost to you).  

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badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.

First off, as mentioned in my last Library Loot post, I am looking for a new co-host.  I’ve had a couple of excellent volunteers step forward but it’s not too late if you’d like to throw your name in the hat.  I’ll be reaching out shortly to everyone who has contacted me.

Second, I have for perhaps the first time absolutely no new books out from the library.  It’s been a hectic and productive month for everything but reading.  When I’m at home, I’m happy catching up on the books I checked out ages ago or relaxing with a DVD.  DVDs, at least, I have been checking out.  Mostly foreign films, like Bába z ledu (which is definitely not as heart-warming as the premise – of a  Czech widow finding love in a year-round swimming club – suggests) and Le Voyage de Fanny (which is a beautifully done story of Jewish children fleeing authorities in wartime France).

But my main delight this week has been starting to rewatch To Serve Them All My Days.  Delderfield was one of several authors who all members of my family – on both sides – loved, so I grew up able to find his books in whatever house I was visiting.  The family favourite is the “A Horseman Riding By” series (witness the fact that I am named at least in part for Claire Derwent – which gave me extra delight when I read Delderfield’s autobiography and learned of his feelings for his Claire) but all the series were loved.  Still, it was years before I learned that both the Horseman books and To Serve Them All My Days had, long before my birth, been turned into television series – and longer still before they were available for me to watch in North America.  The adaptation of A Horseman Riding By horrifies me a bit (Prunella Ransome as Claire?  Ye gods!) but this Andrew Davies-penned adaptation of To Serve Them All My Days is delightful.

What did you pick up this week?

 

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badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.

After many happy years, Linda has decided to cut back on the amount of time she spends blogging and so will no longer be co-hosting Library Loot.  She’s been a wonderful co-host and I will miss her!

What her departure does offer is an opportunity for another blogger to get involved with Library Loot.  I am looking for a new co-host so if you’re interested let me know!  Leave a comment or send me an email (check out my contact information).   All you need is a love of your library and a blog!

Until there is a new co-host, I’ll be continuing to share my loot every two weeks.  If you want to share weekly, you can use the most recent post to share your link (or, you know, volunteer to co-host.  Just an idea).

Yorkshire by Richard Morris – I love the very un-English bragging in this subtitle: a lyrical history of England’s Greatest County.  It also happens to be where much of my father’s family is from, so I’m biased enough to agree.

The Perfect Alibi by A.A. Milne – more Milne!

The Roy Strong Diaries: 1967-1987 – I think this marks the point where I give up any idea of finishing ACOB in one year.  I am simply drawn to too many very, very long books.  I’ve been looking forward to reading Strong’s diaries ever since I first encountered him back in 2012 (when I read The Laskett and A Country Year, adoring them both) and plan to savour every page.

Home and Garden by Gertrude Jekyll – I was inspired to pick this up (though it’s long been on my to-read list) after Penelope Lively mentioned it in her marvellous A Life in the Garden

Love Among the Chickens by P.G. Wodehouse – I’m not expecting much from this very early Wodehouse but, completist that I am, I’m intrigued.

Martini Henry by Sara Crowe – Crowe’s first novel, Campari for Breakfast, was absolutely delightful and completely earned its comparisons with Love, Nina and I Capture the Castle.  I can’t wait to catch up with Sue and Aunt Coral in this sequel.

The Greek Escape  by Karen Swan – This doesn’t sound like something I’d usually try but it’s dark and starting to get cold here so anything that can aid in sunny travel dreams has some appeal.

The Secret of Platform 13 by Eva Ibbotson – A secret doorway into a magical world at King’s Cross station?  Eva Ibbotson beat J.K. Rowling to that idea with this children’s book from 1994.  I read Ibbotson’s adult novels (now rebranded as YA) throughout my teens but am only discovering her children’s books now and am loving them.

What did you pick up this week?

And, more importantly, would you be interested in co-hosting Library Loot? 

This post contains affiliate links from Book Depository, an online book retailer with free international shipping.  If you buy via these links it means I receive a small commission (at no extra cost to you).  

Read Full Post »

badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Linda from Silly Little Mischief that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.

Lots of inter-library loans for me this week, including:

Bond Street Story by Norman Collins – I’ve known for years that I would enjoy Collins’ work and the reality is just as good as promised.  I am in the middle of this story of a London department store and its staff and enjoying every page.

Come Be My Guest by Elizabeth Cadell – Cadell is embarrassingly undemanding on her readers but I enjoy her light tales with their sun-soaked settings.

The Sun in Scorpio by Margery Sharp – I’ve read a few Margery Sharp books this year and loved them all (The Flowering Thorn, Four Gardens, and Something Light, which I’ve not yet reviewed).  This sounds like it will be just as good, based on Sharp expert Barb’s review.  

Life in the Garden by Penelope Lively – One of the last books off my 2017 “The Ones That Got Away” list, I am so excited to read this part memoir-part exploration of literary gardens by one of my favourite authors.

Three Plays by A.A. Milne –  What three you may ask?  The Dover Road, The Truth About Blayds, and The Great Broxopp.  I’ve read (and loved) one and am looking forward to the other two to fill years for A Century of Books.

Bella Figura by Kamin Mohammadi – A typical – and very enjoyable – memoir about swapping a stress-filled life in London for good living in Italy.

What did you pick up this week?

This post contains affiliate links from Book Depository, an online book retailer with free international shipping.  If you buy via these links it means I receive a small commission (at no extra cost to you).  

Read Full Post »

badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Linda from Silly Little Mischief that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.

I am back!  You want to know who is in no doubt as to my return?  My local library branch.  I went in and picked up the shelf full of holds that were waiting for me, no doubt to their great relief.  I’m feeling slightly overwhelmed but in the best possible way.

The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton – I’ve been looking forward to this since Rachel raved about it in the spring.

Kings of the Wyld by Nicholas Eames

No Picnic on Mount Kenya by Felice Benuzzi

The Sea Queen by Linnea Hartsuyker

Holidays in Heck by P.J. O’Rourke

This is Going to Hurt by Adam Kay

The Bucket List by Georgia Clark

The Good Luck Charm by Helena Hunting

The Shortest Way Home by Miriam Parker

The Hollow of Fear by Sherry Thomas – the third in Thomas’ “Lady Sherlock” series

All Things Consoled by Elizabeth Hay

Hiking with Nietzsche by John Kaag

Turvey by Earle Birney – a quick arrival!  I placed a hold on this after reading Barb’s review over the weekend.

The Little Book of Lykke by Meik Wiking

Vox by Christina Dalcher

What did you pick up this week?

This post contains affiliate links from Book Depository, an online book retailer with free international shipping.  If you buy via these links it means I receive a small commission (at no extra cost to you).  

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