PAUL C IN 23 (19)

Den här diskussionen är en fortsättning på: PAUL C IN 23 (18)

Den här diskussionen fortsatte här: PAUL C IN 23 (20)

Diskutera75 Books Challenge for 2023

Bara medlemmar i LibraryThing kan skriva.

PAUL C IN 23 (19)

sep 15, 8:33 pm

Places I am reading:

I will be reading Black Butterflies which is based in Sarajevo.

Redigerat: sep 15, 9:09 pm

The Opening Words

Black Butterflies is a debut novel that was nominated for the Women's Prize won by Barbara Kingsolver.

"It sometimes seems to Zora that, with all the teaching and curating and meetings and paperwork and caring and cooking and cleaning and errands, she is floundering at the midpoint of her life."

Interested ...........................?

Redigerat: sep 15, 9:10 pm


1. The King's Fool by Mahi Binebine (2017) 125 pp Fiction / ANC / Morocco
2. The Golden Ass by Apuleius (c 170) 216 pp Fiction / ANC / Tunisia / 1001
3. Driftnet by Lin Anderson (2003) 262 pp Thriller / Rhona MacLeod 1
4. The Eagle of the Ninth by Rosemary Sutcliff (1954) 292 pp Fiction / BAC
5. Free : Coming of Age at the End of History by Lea Ypi (2021) 310 pp Non-Fiction / NF Challenge
6. The Bridges of Constantine by Ahlem Mosteghanemi (1993) 305 pp Fiction / ANC / Algeria
7. Bloodlines by Fred D'Aguiar (2000) 161 pp Poetry / BAC
8. Borstal Boy by Brendan Behan (1958) 372 pp Fiction / 1001
9. Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson (2008) 300 pp Fiction / AAC
10. U.A. Fanthorpe : Selected Poems by U.A. Fanthorpe (2013) 153 pp Poetry
11. In the Country of Men by Hisham Matar (2006) 245 pp Fiction / ANC / Libya
12. Foundation : The History of England Volume 1 by Peter Ackroyd (2011) 462 pp Non-Fiction
13. Closed Circles by Viveca Sten (2009) 451 pp Thriller / Sandhamn 2
14. The Albemarle Book of Modern Verse edited by FES Finn (1961) 181 pp Poetry
15. Brooklyn Heights by Miral al-Tahawy (2012) 220 pp Fiction / ANC / Egypt
16. The Midnight Bell by Patrick Hamilton (1929) 221 pp Fiction
17. The Siege of Pleasure by Patrick Hamilton (1932) 118 pp Fiction
18. The Plains of Cement by Patrick Hamilton (1934) 188 pp Fiction
19. The Stories of Vladimir Nabokov by Vladimir Nabokov (1995) 663 pp Fiction / Short Stories
20. The Madness of Crowds by Douglas Murray (2019) 267 pp Non-Fiction
21. The Death of Murat Idrissi by Tommy Wieringa (2017) 102 pp Fiction
22. Foster by Claire Keegan (2010) 88 pp Fiction

23. Torch by Lin Anderson (2004) 230 pp Thriller / Rhona MacLeod 2
24. Things I Don't Want to Know by Deborah Levy (2003) 163 pp Non-Fiction
25. The Book of Chameleons by Jose Eduardo Agualusa (2004) 180 pp Fiction / ANC / Angola
26. Dearly by Margaret Atwood (2020) 122 pp Poetry
27. The Days of Abandonment by Elena Ferrante (2002) 188 pp Fiction
28. The Cost of Living by Deborah Levy (2018) 187 pp Non-Fiction
29. The Lost Art of Sinking by Naomi Booth (2015) 86 pp Fiction / BAC
30. Poetry of the Thirties edited by Robin Skelton (1964) 287 pp Poetry
31. The Darkness Knows by Arnaldur Indridason (2017) 338 pp Thriller / Scandi
32. The Whistling Season by Ivan Doig (2006) 345 pp Fiction
33. The History of England Volume II : Tudors by Peter Ackroyd (2012) 471 pp Non-Fiction
34. Male Tears by Benjamin Myers (2021) 264 pp Fiction / Short Stories
35. Woman of the Ashes by Mia Couto (2015) 254 pp Fiction / ANC / Mozambique
36. Real Estate by Deborah Levy (2021) 297 pp Non-Fiction
37. Angle of Repose by Wallace Stegner (1971) 569 pp Fiction / 1001 Books / Pulitzer

38. Deadly Code by Lin Anderson (2005) 261 pp Thriller / Rhona MacLeod 3
39. Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (2003) 307 pp Fiction / ANC / Nigeria
40. My Family and Other Animals by Gerald Durrell (1956) 308 pp Non-Fiction / Memoirs
41. What Goes On : Selected and New Poems 1995-2009 by Stephen Dunn (2009) 195 pp Poetry / AAC
42. I'm a Fan by Sheena Patel (2022) 203 pp Fiction
43. Native Guard by Natasha Trethewey (2006) 46 pp Poetry / AAC

Redigerat: sep 15, 9:11 pm


44. Anne Boleyn : 500 Years of Lies by Hayley Nolan (2019) 282 pp Non-Fiction / BAC
45. Hotel of the Saints by Ursula Hegi (2001) 170 pp Fiction / AAC
46. Dark Flight by Lin Anderson (2007) 392 pp Thiller
47. Boulder by Eva Baltasar (2020) 105 pp Fiction / Spain
48. Moscow by Nick Carter (1970) 155 pp Thriller
49. Thirteen Months of Sunrise by Rania Mamoun Short Stories / ANC / Sudan
50. The Waste Land by T.S. Eliot (1922) 32 pp Poetry
51. Felicity : Poems by Mary Oliver (2014) 81 pp Poetry
52. Wandering Souls by Cecile Pin (2023) 238 pp Fiction / Vietnam
53. Justice on Trial : Radical Solutions for a System at Breaking Point by Chris Daw (2020) 264 pp Non-Fiction
54. The Jewel in the Crown by Paul Scott (1966) 488 pp Fiction
55. Bullet Train by Kotaro Isaka (2010) 451 pp Thriller / Japan

56. Taste : My Life Through Food by Stanley Tucci (2021) 299 pp Non-Fiction
57. Tell Me the Truth About Life curated by Cerys Matthews (2019) 177 pp Poetry
58. Those Feet : An Intimate History of English Football by David Winner (2005) 268 pp Non-Fiction
59. The Arctic : Poems by Don Paterson (2022) 82 pp Poetry
60. Suffer the Little Children by Donna Leon (2007) 342 pp Thiller
61. The Missing Months by Lachlan MacKinnon (2022) 63 pp Poetry

62. Easy Kill by Lin Anderson (2008) 390 pp Thriller
63. Civil War : The History of England Volume III by Peter Ackroyd (2014) 470 pp Non-Fiction
64. Ruth Pitter : Collected Poems by Ruth Pitter (1996) 299 pp Poetry
65. Dance of the Jakaranda by Peter Kimani (2017) 350 pp Fiction / ANC / Kenya
66. England's Green by Zaffar Kunial (2022) 70 pp Poetry
67. Time Shelter by Georgi Gospodinov (2020) 302 pp Fiction / Bulgaria
68. The Illustrated Woman by Helen Mort (2022) 82 pp Poetry
69. Oxblood by Tom Benn (2022) 245 pp Fiction
70. The Swerve by Stephen Greenblatt (2011) 263 PP Non-Fiction
71. No Country for Old Men by Cormac McCarthy (2005) 309 pp Fiction
72. The Breast by Philip Roth (1972) 74 pp Fiction 1001 Books
73. Heritage by Miguel Bonnefoy (2020) 149 pp Fiction / Venezuela
74. Doctor Who : The Androids of Tara (1978) 143 pp SF / BAC
75. Veronika Decides to Die by Paulo Coelho (1998) 210 pp Fiction /1001 books / Brazil
76. Collected Later Poems by Anthony Hecht (2003) 238 pp Poetry
77. Zazie in the Metro by Raymond Queneau (1959) 177 pp Fiction / France
78. Quiet by Victoria Adukwei Bulley (2022) 81 pp Poetry / ANC / Ghana
79. Bonsai by Alejandro Zambra (2006) 74 pp Fiction / Chile
80. Pyre by Perumal Murugam (2013) 194 pp Fiction / India
81. Small Country by Gael Faye (2016) 183 pp Fiction / ANC / Burundi
82. Fieldwork in Ukrainian Sex by Oksana Zabuzhko (1996) 161 pp Fiction / Ukraine

Redigerat: sep 28, 10:45 pm


83. Lenin on the Train by Catherine Merridale (2016) 291 pp Non-Fiction / Reading through time
84. Selected Poems by W.H. Auden (1979) 319 pp Poetry
85. Paradais by Fernanda Melchior (2022) 118 pp Fiction / Mexico
86. Final Cut by Lin Anderson (2009) 344 pp Thriller
87. John Heath-Stubbs : Selected Poems by John Heath-Stubbs (1990) 144 pp Poetry
88. Kingdom of Characters by Jing Tsu (2022) 280 pp Non Fiction / Taiwan
89. Cemetery Lake by Paul Cleave (2008) 347 pp Thriller / New Zealand
90. Fly Away, Peter by David Malouf (1982) 142 pp Fiction / Australia
91. East of Eden by John Steinbeck (1952) 602 pp Fiction / 1001 Books
92. Profiles in Courage by John F. Kennedy (1955) 226 pp Non-Fiction / AAC

93. Trespasses by Louise Kennedy (2022) 309 pp Fiction
94. August 1914 by Bruno Cabanes (2014) 196 pp Non-Fiction
95. The Shameful State by Sony Labou Tansi (1981) 116 pp Fiction / ANC / DRC
96. Told by Starlight in Chad by Joseph Brahim Seid (2007) 71 pp Fiction / ANC / Chad
97. The House of Doors by Tan Twan Eng (2023) 304 pp Fiction / Malaysia
98. Six Weeks in the Sioux Tepees by Sarah F Wakefield (1863) 87 pp Non-Fiction
99. Winchelsea by Alex Preston (2022) 334 pp Fiction / BAC
100. Blue White Red by Alain Mabanckou (1998) 147 pp Fiction / ANC / Congo
101. The Trees by Percival Everett (2021) 308 pp Fiction / AAC
102. Bound to Violence by Yambo Ouologuem (1968) 182 pp Fiction / ANC / Mali
103. The Great Alone by Kristen Hannah (2018) 438pp Fiction
104. Standing Heavy by Gauz (2014) 167 pp Fiction / ANC / Ivory Coast
105. So Long a Letter by Mariama Ba (1979) 95 pp Fiction / ANC / Senegal
106. The Following Story by Cees Nooteboom (1991) 98 pp Fiction
107. Requiem for a Wren by Nevil Shute (1955) 250 pp Fiction
108. The Marriage Portrait by Maggie O'Farrell (2022) 436 pp Fiction

109. Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line by Deepa Anappara (2020) 344 pp Fiction
110. Assembly by Natasha Brown (2021) 100 pp Fiction
111. The Maidens by Alex Michaelides (2021) 356 pp Thriller /BAC /Cyprus
112. Careless by Kirsty Capes (2021) 317 pp Fiction
113. The Cry of Winnie Mandela by Njabulo Ndebele (2004) 146 pp ANC / South Africa
114. In a Lonely Place by Dorothy B Hughes (1947) 222 pp Thriller / AAC
115. The Furrows by Namwali Serpell (2022) 266 pp Fiction / ANC / Zambia
116. Prophet Song by Paul Lynch (2023) 309 pp Fiction
117. The Dictionary of Lost Words by Pip Williams (2020) 419 pp Fiction
118. So Late in the Day by Claire Keegan (2023) 47 pp Fiction
119. Kim Jiyoung, Born 1982 by Cho Nam-Joo (2016) 163 pp Fiction / South Korea
120. The Lonely Skier by Hammond Innes (1947) 176 pp Thriller
121. The Covenant of Water by Abraham Verghese (2023) 715 pp Fiction ANC / Ethiopia
122. Old God's Time by Sebastian Barry (2023) 261 pp Fiction
123. Black Butterflies by Priscilla Morris (2023) 278 pp Fiction / Bosnia
124. We Need New Names by NoViolet Bulawayo (2013) 290 pp Fiction ANC/ Zimbabwe
125. Our Town by Thornton Wilder (1938) 114 pp Drama

Redigerat: sep 30, 6:18 am

African Reading Challenge 2023


January - NORTH AFRICA read 5
February - LUSOPHONE LIT read 2
March - ADICHIE or EMECHETA read 1
April - THE HORN OF AFRICA read 1
June - EAST AFRICA - Read 3
July - ACHEBE or Okri
December - WEST AFRICA read 1

Total : 22

Redigerat: sep 30, 6:19 am


January - Rosemary Sutcliff & Fred D'Aguiar Eagle of the Ninth by Sutcliff, Bloodlines by D'Aguiar
February - Novellas & Short Stories - The Lost Art of Sinking by Booth, Male Tears by Myers
March - Vita Sackville-West & Tariq Ali
April - British Queens - Anne Boleyn : 500 Years of Lies by Hayley Nolan
May - RF Delderfield & Jan Morris
June - Time Travel - Doctor Who : The Androids of Tara by David Fisher
July - Nadifa Mohamed & Tom Holt
August - Seafaring Stories - Winchelsea by Alex Preston
September - Campus Books - The Maidens by Alex Michaelides

Redigerat: sep 30, 6:21 am


January - YA Books - Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson
February - Richard Powers
March - Poetry - What Goes On : Selected and New Poems by Stephen Dunn
April - Ursula Hegi - Hotel of the Saints
May -
June - Wildcard - No Country for Old Men by Cormac McCarthy
July - American Presidents - Profiles in Courage by John F Kennedy
August - Percival Everett - The Trees
September - Crime Queens - In a Lonely Place by Dorothy B Hughes

Redigerat: sep 30, 6:23 am


Countries : 50 (26 September 2023)

Create Your Own Visited Countries Map

Redigerat: sep 30, 6:24 am


Starting Stats of the Year :

Present TBR : 5,679 books
Pages to Read : 1,943,264
Average Book Length : 342.18

Books Read 125 (28 Sept 23)
Pages : 30,288
Pages per day : 111.76
Average Book Length : 242.31 pages
Female Authors : 52
Male Authors : 70
Various : 3
Countries Read : 51 (UK, Morocco, Tunisia, Albania, Algeria, Guyana, Ireland, USA. Libya, Sweden, Egypt, Russia, Netherlands, Angola, Canada, Italy, Iceland, Mozambique, Nigeria, Spain, Sudan, Vietnam, Japan, Kenya, Bulgaria, Venezuela, Brazil, France, Ghana, Chile, India, Burundi, Ukraine, Mexico, Taiwan, Australia, New Zealand, DRC, Chad, Malaysia, Congo, Senegal, Cote D'Ivoire, Mali, Cyprus, South Africa, Zambia, South Korea, Ethiopia, Bosnia, Zimbabwe)

Fiction : 65
Thriller : 15
Non-Fiction : 19
Sci-Fi/Fantasy : 1
Poetry : 19
Short Stories : 5
Drama : 1

1001 Books First Edition
Read 6 (333)

Nobel Winners
Read : (75)

Booker Winners
Read : (38)

Pulitzer Fiction Prize
Read 1 : (21)

Women's Prize
Read : (7)

Books Added in 2023

359 (28 Sep 2023)

Books Read in 2023

125 (28 Sep 2023)

Books Culled in 2023

116 (26 Sep 2023)

Revised TBR : 5,797

sep 15, 8:37 pm

Welcome to my nineteenth thread of 2023.

sep 15, 8:37 pm

HAppy new one!

sep 15, 8:39 pm

Thank you Anita - that was quick!

sep 15, 9:14 pm

Happy new thread Paul!

It looks like coffee is really a thing in Sarajevo!

sep 15, 9:17 pm

>14 quondame: Another reason to like the place, surely?!

Lovely to see you as always dear Susan. x

sep 15, 9:21 pm

Happy new one, Paul

sep 15, 9:25 pm

>16 jessibud2: Thank you, Shelley.

I am in the fortunate position of celebrating Malaysia Day with a public holiday and a lot of reading!

Malaysia Day doesn't celebrate independence from the UK in 1957 (that was August 31) it commemorates the date six years later when Malaya became Malaysia by admitting Sabah and Sarawak into the Malaysian federation as well as Singapore who were subsequently ejected.

Redigerat: sep 15, 9:27 pm

Happy New Thread, Paul. I read Black Butterflies earlier this year , and enjoyed it . I hope you do to . I am sure you will

sep 15, 9:28 pm

>18 vancouverdeb: Thanks Deb. To be honest I am looking forward to this one as I haven't heard anyone say a bad word about it!

Redigerat: sep 15, 9:33 pm

Friday lunch time additions:

Very controlled mini splurge:

351. So Late in the Day by Claire Keegan
352. The Night of the Hunter by Davis Grubb
353. How to Build a Boat by Elaine Feeney

sep 15, 9:44 pm

In September 1973 Gilbert O'Sullivan released I'm a Writer Not a Fighter

Despite the obvious Stevie Wonder influence of some of the tracks this is more typical of him and made it to the top of pile in the UK charts : "Get Down"

sep 15, 10:17 pm

>20 PaulCranswick: Nice!

Happy new thread, Paul!

sep 15, 10:25 pm

Happy new thread!

sep 15, 11:30 pm

>22 alcottacre: Thank you, Stasia. Of course your 17 books yesterday rather make mine look a bit shabby. xx

>23 amanda4242: Thank you, Amanda.

Redigerat: sep 15, 11:46 pm

>20 PaulCranswick: I have read a couple of Claire Keegans' this year! She is great.

Happy reading, as usual :)

sep 15, 11:59 pm

>25 LovingLit: Lovely to see you, Megan.
This is typically brief at less than 50 pages. I will probably read it in my lunch break on Monday!

sep 16, 12:30 am

Sometimes I found Jackson Browne's music too earnest and too difficult to sing along to, but he hit his creative spark very early. I love his 1974 album Late for the Sky.

I could have chosen most of the songs on the album and I don't really have a favourite but I have gone with "For a Dancer"

sep 16, 12:35 am

I remember visiting my cousin in a small market town just outside Wakefield in 1978 and my late Auntie Marion taking me into the local record store where I bought vinyl recording of A New World Record; brilliant artwork and the vinyl was in see through red and super cool.

It was my second ELO record, I loved it and played it to death. September 1975 was a great month for music.

This is the brilliant "Telephone Line"

Redigerat: sep 16, 12:46 am

A month I can look at my albums and not choose Songs in the Key of Life must be some month but in September 1976 I have to go with the self titled album by Joan Armatrading

A flawless album and it is such a shame she never quite got the international recognition she deserved. The most famous song on the album is the beautiful "Love and Affection" but I will play this slightly less well known track "Down to Zero"

sep 16, 1:01 am

Growing up, my mum and dad's close friends and those who were their neighbours and help-meets were our Aunties and Uncles. My Dad was brought up in Sharlston where John Simpson hails from and was brought up in a two up two down pit-terrace in front of the coal stacks/slag heaps in the village. His parents moved on but we still used to visit the row to meet-up with Auntie Dot and her daughter Auntie Ivy (the men had all died early from pulmonary issues associated with working down the mines) and Auntie Ivy's daughter Mary (a few years our senior) had two musical passions in the 70s Rod Stewart and Smokie. Listening to their album, "Bright Lights and Back Alleys", released in September 1977 brings back long Sunday evenings in their front room eating toasted teacakes and buttered cream-crackers swallowed down with strong Yorkshire tea (see John, me too!).

They were never my favourite but I am always happy listening to their music - simpler and happier days. This was the lead single "It's Your Life"

sep 16, 1:08 am

It is hard to imagine how huge Blondie were in the last couple of years of the 1970s in the UK and Debbie Harry's picture adorned most boy's bedroom walls and her image probably, guiltily, their nighttime fantasies. Parallel Lines is a truly great album and they never got anywhere near replicating it. An easy pick for September 1978.

There were some big hits on the album but my favourite tracks were "Pretty Baby" and "Picture This". This is the latter.

sep 16, 1:14 am

I might read So Late in the Day . At 60 some pages I think I could manage that on my kindle. I don't really like reading on my kindle, as I like to flip back and forth between the pages and I just don't find my kindle that great for that. I know many people love their Kindle or Kobo, but I'm a paper book person.

How to Build A Boat is not yet available in a Canada, so I'll wait on that one. If I could bear to read on my kindle, I think I could read it that way. But I will wait for a paper book format

sep 16, 1:14 am

>24 PaulCranswick: The 17 books were for the past week, Paul. I report from Friday-Friday rather than on a daily basis as a lot of my books come in the mail. There is not a local used book store here.

sep 16, 1:19 am

Leeds has never really matched Liverpool and Manchester as regional musical powerhouses although we can boast The Kaiser Chiefs, Chumbawamba and Soft Cell, The Mission, The Mekons, and probably the first Gang of Four.

Their most successful album was 1979's Entertainment!

One of the most politically active of all bands at a time when I was just as political and radical as they were. Saw them loads of times. This was their first single - "Damaged Goods".

sep 16, 1:22 am

>32 vancouverdeb: Hani bought me a Kindle, Deb, but I never took to it, so I certainly agree with you that it is better to wait on the physical book.

Thanks for suggesting Prophet Song - I am really glad I promoted it in the reading list - powerful stuff indeed!

>33 alcottacre: I don't have a good used bookstore here either, Stasia, thank goodness otherwise the structural engineers would be called in to check the safety of my living spaces! I have my regular Friday visits to my temple of books but I am making a conscious effort to control myself.

sep 16, 1:30 am

>35 PaulCranswick: Well, now that I have a Blackwell's on tap, I have gone fairly nutso with buying books that are simply not available here. At least not yet. The only bookstore that is here in Sherman now is a Books-a-Million, which I consider to be only marginally better than Amazon.

sep 16, 2:37 am

>36 alcottacre: I go to a Japanese owned bookstore, Kinokuniya which is much better than I have any right to expect in Malaysia. I miss shops like Blackwell's, Foyle's and Daunt but I cannot really complain, Stasia.

sep 16, 2:47 am

BOOK #115

The Furrows by Namwali Serpell
Date of Publication : 2022
Origin of Author : Zambia
Pages : 266 pp

Elegant prose with a labyrinthine storyline, Serpell succeeds by way of confabulation and distortion to convey the true horror of juvenile tragedy and separation.

I truly could not follow some of the plot twists and I think that was half of the point. Isn't that what life and loss is like?

Recommended but deserving of close and careful attention.

sep 16, 3:21 am

The music of SKA was culturally very important in the UK in my high school and Uni days - it was instrumental in helping improve racial unity between black and white and the leaders of that movement was Coventry's The Specials. More Specials was released in September 1980

With Jerry Dammers songwriting and Terry Hall's singing allied to a diverse amalgam of players, The Specials were, erm, Special.

This is "Enjoy Yourself" played live and the video captures the joy of their act, I think.

sep 16, 3:32 am

Happy new thread, Paul!

>31 PaulCranswick: Glad to see an album I owned back in the days :-)
The first album I ever bought was 'The Kick Inside' from Kate Bush, Blondie came shortly after.

sep 16, 3:43 am

In September 1981, Phil Collins was flying high and still cool fresh from the success of his debut "Face Value" album. A lot of the music on Abacab is similar to that fine effort and is probably in many ways Genesis' most commercial outing.

This is "No Reply at All"

sep 16, 3:44 am

>40 FAMeulstee: Thanks Anita. I had that one too of course. That first Kate Bush album was strikingly original.

sep 16, 6:30 am

>28 PaulCranswick: Loved this album too Paul. Saw them live once.

Redigerat: sep 16, 6:36 am

>43 Caroline_McElwee: Their stuff from 1974-1981 was flawless, Caroline, and they remain one of my absolute go-to bands.

sep 16, 6:37 am

I'm glad to be early, before the America discussions. Happy new thread, Paul!

sep 16, 6:39 am

In September 1982 Depeche Mode were rocked by Vince Clarke leaving to form Yazoo with Alison Moyet so Martin Gore wrote all the tracks on their sophomore album, A Broken Frame.

There is something almost hypnotically compelling about their music from this time and this is the "See You"

sep 16, 6:41 am

>45 DianaNL: Hahaha, Diana, I know - they disturb me too! I will try my best to keep thread #19 free from any mention of the awfulness of politics, American, or elsewhere.

sep 16, 6:50 am

In September 1983 UB40 released their first (and best) album of covers in Labour of Love

I love all the singles on this album and it is definitely my favourite of the band but the stand out track for me is their cover of Jimmy Cliff's "Many Rivers to Cross". Here is a live version from 20 years later:

sep 16, 7:19 am

Good day, happy new thread!

sep 16, 8:14 am

>49 Kristelh: Thanks Kristel - happy Saturday!

sep 16, 10:12 am

Happy new thread my friend.
There is a lot of good music around here - besides the good books!

sep 16, 10:38 am

Happy new thread Paul!

>48 PaulCranswick: Love that smooth reggae sound.

sep 16, 10:57 am

>38 PaulCranswick: I already put that one in the BlackHole. Now I just have to track down a copy.

Happy whatever, Paul!

sep 16, 11:38 am

>51 SirThomas: Thank you, Thomas.

>52 humouress: Ali Campbell and the boys did a great job with that album, Nina.

sep 16, 11:39 am

>53 alcottacre: It is a strange book in truth, Stasia.

sep 16, 5:35 pm

Care is rewarded in this game!

Puzzle #98

sep 16, 6:04 pm

Happy new thread, Paul! Your threads are zooming along so fast, I can’t keep up.

>1 PaulCranswick: Looks lovely, wouldn’t mind wandering around some there.

Keep up the music posts, I am enjoying them!

sep 16, 9:07 pm

Happy new thread, Paul!

sep 16, 9:18 pm

>57 EllaTim: Lovely to see you, Ella. I am heading into the later part of the 80s and the early 90s which is my musical black hole to be honest but I have listened to a few more already and will update. xx

>58 drneutron: Thanks DocRoc.

sep 16, 9:30 pm

Happy new thread, Paul

sep 16, 9:43 pm

>60 ArlieS: Thank you, Arlie.

sep 16, 9:53 pm

BOOK #116

Prophet Song by Paul Lynch
Date of Publication : 2023
Origin of Author : Ireland
Pages : 309 pp

Cormac McCarthy passed away this year but his spirit lives on in the visceral writing of Paul Lynch. The landscape is different with the lanes and houses of Dublin replacing the Badlands of the US but the human concerns are the same.

This is a book that is painful but rewarding to read. It is a book with a voice that demands to be heard - a voice decrying state overreach, the loss of liberty, inhumanity, oppression, the feral greed of conflict, the importance of human kindness and familial togetherness. It is a book without a proper end although there is a watershed of sorts. It is a book that chilled me to the bone severally and had little in the way of lightness about it. It is a book that forced you to read in chunks by its very structure. It is a book to be moved by and to remember.

I don't know whether this book will win the Booker, and I suspect it probably will not, but I do believe that it will outlive whatever does go on to win and it will certainly stay with me long after I came weeping to the end.

Obviously recommended.

sep 16, 10:15 pm

September 1984 and I will move across Europe to Germany and the anthem rock of Alphaville. Their album Forever Young may be sugary and overblown but it is still listenable.

The title track is probably an obvious choice so I will go with "Big in Japan". This video could have only come from the Eighties.

sep 16, 10:20 pm

Anita mentioned Kate Bush above and September 1985 saw her return to the top of the charts with the wonderful Hounds of Love album.

I was in the first throes of love at 19 years old and remember passionate embraces to the strains of the title track such that it will always be my go to song on this exceptional record.

sep 16, 10:30 pm

The middle part of the Eighties was the time of my political activism and the music of the time clouded that.
Billy Bragg a socialist fellow-traveler released Talking With the Taxman About Poetry.

The heir to Ewan MacColl his electrified folk was angry and inspired.

This is "There is Power in a Union"

sep 16, 10:40 pm

September 1987 saw the last hurrah of the group championed by students throughout the UK - The Smiths. I saw them umpteen times. Strangeways, Here We Come was their last studio album - for those who do not know, Strangeways is the name of the prison in the centre of Manchester near Cheetham Hill and I worked in its shadow for a couple of years after this when I left University when not at project sites.

This is "Girlfriend in a Coma"

Redigerat: sep 16, 10:52 pm

Sometimes don't we wish that we knew what had happened to someone who displayed such early promise? The wonderfully named Tanita Tikaram.

Her debut album Ancient Heart was self-written, released in September 1988 and indicated someone who would be at the height of music for a generation but she never reproduced the songs on this album.

This is one of the four singles "Twist in My Sobriety" which reminds me of something that Sting would have written and have been proud to do so.

sep 16, 11:02 pm

I will close out the Eighties with, what I rate to be, Bob Dylan's last great album, Oh Mercy

I don't think that the album has a bad track but there are some real stand-outs: Ring Them Bells, What Good Am I? and Man in the Long Black Coat. This though is "Everything is Broken"

sep 17, 7:45 am

September 1990 was the release of George Michael's seminal Listen Without Prejudice

He didn't cover too many songs but this cover of Stevie Wonder's "They Won't Go Where I Go" is on a par with the original.

sep 17, 7:53 am

Simply Red are a little too poppy for my tastes normally but Hani loves the record they released in September 1991 : Stars.

Six years later and we had our own children and I do love the song "For Your Babies"

Redigerat: sep 17, 8:07 am

Regulars here will know that Paul Weller is one of my absolute musical heroes. He entered the 1990s without a recording contract after the break-up of the Style Council. He launched his solo careers with the self-titled debut : Paul Weller which showcased a return to his roots concentrating on the songs rather than the message.

This is the excellent "Above the Clouds" performed acoustically in his pomp.

sep 17, 8:17 am

I am going to break a rule here and include Paul Weller again for his wonderful Wild Wood album released in September 1993 and possibly my favourite of his albums.

This is the title song:

sep 17, 8:28 am

Blues Traveler threatened with their surprisingly titled Four since it was actually their fourth album, to become mainstream stars.

It didn't quite happen but the single "Run-Around" was fun:

sep 17, 8:33 am

By September 1995 Blur were in the middle of the Brit-Pop war with Oasis and were tired. The Great Escape was a patchy effort but did include two great songs:

"Country House" and this one "The Universal"

sep 17, 9:49 am

Happy Newish Thread!

Woot! I don't know if Don McLean made your list of tops, but for some odd reason he's playing here in my very small town in a few weeks. I was on the wait list for tickets and now have achieved one. I think American Pie was the first album that I knew the lyrics for every song. I was in high school at the time.

sep 17, 10:48 am

>75 streamsong: I do like Don McLean, Janet, and there would certainly be a chance of picking him if he appears in the monthly lists for the times I am featuring.

sep 17, 2:36 pm

Happy new thread, Paul! And hooray for Joan Armatrading, she was quite a song-writer.

sep 17, 3:16 pm

>77 banjo123: And still is Rhonda - still regularly performing and releasing new music. A particular favourite of mine.

Redigerat: sep 17, 3:26 pm

BOOK #117

The Dictionary of Lost Words by Pip Williams
Date of Publication : 2020
Origin of Author : Australia
Pages : 419 pp

This novel seems like light relief amid The Covenant of Water and Prophet Song but it holds itself comfortably in such company.

Obviously cinematic and this would make an excellent adaptation if that has not already been done. It is a superior blend of fiction with fact with suffragettes, the Great War and the struggle to create the Oxford English Dictionary all combining to produce a vivid and enthralling novel.

Not perhaps of the same literary merit as those by Verghese and Lynch but who cares, this was time well spent.


sep 17, 6:34 pm

Four’s one of my favorite albums. Their Travelers and Thieves is right up there too.

sep 17, 6:53 pm

>80 drneutron: I haven't got that one, Jim, so I will go and have a listen.

sep 18, 12:41 am

>62 PaulCranswick: Excellent review of Prophet Song, Paul . I am glad you posted it on the main page, as like you, I want to popularize it. But it's hard to find in North America right now. I found in on amazon ca, but it is not actually released in Canada until Dec 22 , 2023. So our Canadian bookstore , the main one, Indigo / Chapter, does not have not, nor do the libraries. Same situation in the US, though for some reason amazon com is not carrying Prophet Song yet.

Speaking of music, I am over my love affair with Cat Stevens , though he still very good, and have moved onto Coldplay and Chris Martin for now. Oh so fickle, I am. Why did Gwenyth Paltrow leave him? I don't understand.

sep 18, 12:53 am

>82 vancouverdeb: Thanks Deb, it was a difficult, painful and unremitting book, wasn't it?

I like Cat/Yusof and Coldplay but then again my musical taste is so widespread and forgiving that I am almost bound to like them both.

Gwyneth Paltrow left Chris Martin after her eyes met mine in a banquet in Kuala Lumpur! Of course not Hani would have skinned the pair of us alive!
Apparently they broke up because of not having sufficient time to spend together. Mmmm, that sounds like a poor excuse to me and relationships should not be walked away from quite so easily.

sep 18, 12:57 am

>83 PaulCranswick: Good one Paul! So that's why she left him.

It was a difficult book, yes. I think you will find Old God's Time similar in that it very sad, but a very different story.

sep 18, 1:03 am

BOOK #118

So Late in the Day by Claire Keegan
Date of Publication : 2023
Origin of Author : Ireland
Pages : 47 pp

A poignant little tale of lost love and regret.

I have never much liked stingy people or those who are calculative and selfish, although I am happy to say that I managed to marry someone who is the most generous, giving and selfless person ever to come into my life.

To have the narrator of the story looking back on the consequences of his own mean-spirited behaviour lends a piquancy to this story which is not long enough to be a novella so it would just about qualify as a novelette.

Claire Keegan is about brilliance in miniature. Tone and tenor is her metier and she can convey empathy even in the process of being judgemental.

A lunch break well spent!

sep 18, 1:07 am

>84 vancouverdeb: I don't know why Deb but Gwyneth has never quite been my cup of tea. Something self indulgent about her, I guess. I am happy enough with my choice of ladies in truth which helps too. xx

I am looking forward to Old God's Time and I will start it this evening (Monday) along with Black Butterflies and Kim Ji Young, Born 1982.

sep 18, 6:16 am

>64 PaulCranswick: Thanks for including Kate Bush in your overview, Paul.
I had all her records, and loved the photo on this one.

>67 PaulCranswick: Again a familiar album.
As I always want to understand the lyrics, I had to look up a few, while listening to this one. Tanita Tikeram used a wide range of words.

sep 18, 6:50 am

Happy newish thread!

>79 PaulCranswick: I loved this book. And, agreed, not a literary tour de force but a good read all the same.

sep 18, 7:31 am

>87 FAMeulstee: Kate Bush was gorgeous and invaded my dreams often in my teens.
Tanita Tikaram's debut album was so good that she never got close to replicating it.

>88 witchyrichy: Thanks Karen. I agree with that assessment entirely - it was a very satisfying read. It felt like reading a book that was written many years ago and not in this decade and I mean that in a good way.

sep 18, 8:30 am

Happy new thread, Paul.

sep 18, 8:57 am

>90 bell7: Thank you, Mary. xx

sep 18, 9:44 am

Happy new thread! Okay, and congrats on passing #100, too. But more importantly, congrats on being a Grandpa!! I snuck back to your last thread -- what a cutie. : )

sep 18, 11:12 am

Hi Paul! I am hopelessly behind but just skimmed the threads I missed. Congrats on your new title of Grandpa and I hope you are able to meet Nami soon! So Long a Letter caught my eye -- my college had a study abroad program in Senegal and many of my friends in the French department read that one, but it never appeared on one of my syllabi. I might try reading it in the original French someday.

sep 18, 11:19 am

>62 PaulCranswick: I do believe that it will outlive whatever does go on to win and it will certainly stay with me long after I came weeping to the end. I whole heartedly agree. If another book wins the Booker, it is going to have to be a dandy to surpass this one.

>79 PaulCranswick: Dodging that BB as I have already read that one.

>85 PaulCranswick: I have a copy of that one on the way to me already.

Happy whatever, brother!

sep 18, 12:18 pm

Happy new-ish thread!

sep 18, 3:08 pm

>92 Berly: Thank you, Kimmers. Lovely to see you posting again.

>93 curioussquared: Yasmyne may well beat me to the punch by bringing Nami to Malaysia first before she restarts work.

sep 18, 3:14 pm

>94 alcottacre: I watched a couple of YouTube Booker review and prediction shows and if one thing is clear it is that readers are very split about this year's longlist. Tan Twan Eng seems like a given as I haven't seen anyone who actively dislikes it. Barry and Lynch seem more marmite but I think enough of the panel should like them to get onto the shortlist.

>95 foggidawn: Thank you, Foggi.

sep 18, 4:15 pm

What are my favourite years in music? Maybe the first four years of the 1970s or the last four years of the 90s.

September 1996 was a super month but my most listened to album is definitely K by Kula Shaker.

This is "Start All Over"

sep 18, 4:19 pm

The Ocean Colour Scene released their follow up to the breakthrough Moseley Shoals in September 1997 with Marchin' Already

This is the song "Better Day"

sep 18, 4:23 pm

Hi Paul, a belated Happy New Thread mate. I knew you were a secret Yorkshire Tea drinker, a brew made that you could stand your teaspoon up in. We all had lots of 'Auntie's' but never any 'Uncle's', they were never referred to.

The houses on Long Row and Crossley street are still there, being bought and sold, there might still be a few who worked at the Pit, still there and a few new houses built on the old Pit site, mainly near where the Canteen and lockers and showers were. No pit horn sounding the shift changes that i grew up with.

sep 18, 4:28 pm

Having to choose between the Goo Goo Dolls, Eels and Alison Moorer, the male in me will always gravitate to the latter!

Her debut in September 1998 Alabama Song

spawned the hit "A Soft Place to Fall"

sep 18, 4:31 pm

>100 johnsimpson: I, of course, thought of you when writing >30 PaulCranswick: as it is something we will always have in common and is part of us and held dear.

My Dad worked hard so that I wouldn't have to still be there but none of us thought as kids that we would outlive those pits.

sep 18, 4:36 pm

The Nineties are brought to a close by an Oxford based group (not Coldplay or Radiohead) but the superior Supergrass!

Their self-titled third album is not as strong as their previous two but has some great tunes nevertheless. This is "Moving"

Redigerat: sep 18, 9:08 pm

>97 PaulCranswick: Well, I can tell you that having read it, I am not sure how Jonathan Escoffery's book made it even onto the longlist. The House of Doors showed up at my house today, I am just not sure when I can get to it. I am really going to try and squeeze it in before the end of the month though. I am finishing How to Build a Boat up tonight.

Redigerat: sep 18, 9:17 pm

>104 alcottacre: Not many are giving Jonathan Escoffery much chance of the shortlist which usually means it will be there. I am frankly astonished that Abraham Verghese and Barbara Kingsolver are not there but there are rumours that the latter's book was not put forward for consideration by her publisher which is ridiculous if true.

How is Elaine Feeney's book as that one has divided opinions too?

sep 18, 10:15 pm

Hi Paul. I really loved Black Butterflies and it made me want to visit that part of the world. As a complete novice sketcher/artist, I loved her descriptions of the bridges Zora was painting and her process / experience of seeing color and shapes. And the complicated, compassionate, realistic layers of love story --- so good.

>104 alcottacre: and >105 PaulCranswick: I'm hoping to get to How to Build a Boat soon. I offered it as one of three Booker nominees we might read, selfishly hoping to sneak in at least one of the books I brought back from Ireland. The group selected Prophet Song so that will come first.

sep 18, 10:27 pm

>106 EBT1002: I have made a start on Morris' book, Ellen and so far so very good.

sep 18, 11:03 pm

>105 PaulCranswick: I thought you were reading How to Build a Boat along with me this month, Paul? I can see why it has divided opinions and it is not going to be above a 4 star read for me. I have about 30 pages left to read at this point and then I will do my final thoughts on it.

Redigerat: sep 18, 11:32 pm

>108 alcottacre: I will be reading it this month certainly Stasia. I am ahead of my reading plans for a change and have seven books to complete in 12 days (four ongoing) and I will coast home all being well. How to Build a Boat is in my last block of three books.

I am reading

Old God's Time by Sebastian Barry
Black Butterflies by Priscilla Morris &
Kim Ji Young, Born 1982 by Cho Nam-Joo

as well as
The Covenant of Water by Abraham Verghese which I am savoring to the extent I will be devastated to part from the joy of its embrace. As much as I have loved The House of Doors, Trespasses, The Marriage Portrait and Prophet Song, Verghese's book is my favourite read of 2023 by a country mile.

Feeney, E Pam Zhang and NonViolet Bulawayo will complete my scheduled September reads and I may even have time for another one or two.

sep 19, 12:19 am

>109 PaulCranswick: My thoughts on How to Build a Boat are now posted on my new thread, Paul, if you want to read them. Or wait until you have read it yourself so we can compare notes :)

I have Old God's Time here to read too, it is just a matter of getting to it! I NEED to live on Venus!

As I was setting up my new thread, I was looking at my list of top reads for this year and thinking that if I did not add another book to that list, it would still be a great reading year - and I have yet to get to The House of Doors, Trespasses and The Marriage Portrait!

sep 19, 12:45 am

>110 alcottacre: I have still to do, Demon Copperhead, Tom Lake and I am sure that one or two other of the Booker lists will sing to me too.
Mine has been a great reading year too especially by my recent standards.

sep 19, 12:58 am

>111 PaulCranswick: Well, Demon Copperhead was my first 5 star read of the year, so I can tell you that you have some great reading ahead of you, Paul. Tom Lake is no slouch either.

I am glad to hear that you are pleased with your reading year too!

sep 19, 4:09 am

>112 alcottacre: Two books I do want to get to this year if possible, Stasia. The Love Songs of W.E.B. Du Bois too.

sep 19, 11:27 am

>28 PaulCranswick: My first ELO record was Out Of The Blue. And I fell in love. My brother had the cassette of A New World Record and I may have borrowed/stolen it.

sep 19, 11:50 am

Happy newish thread! I miss a day or two and wow! it takes another day or two to catch up!

sep 19, 6:26 pm

>114 hredwards: Touche, Harold - it was mine too and it blew me away.

>115 hredwards: I am so grateful to my friends for keeping my thread chugging along so consistently.

sep 19, 6:32 pm

>113 PaulCranswick: The books just keep coming! I have so many to read yet this year - and I have already started planning next year's reads! Are we still on to do the War Literature project for 2024?

Happy whatever, Paul!

sep 19, 6:44 pm

>117 alcottacre: I love planning ahead too, Stasia. I have piles of books taken out in advance of reading them.

Definitely up for a War Literature project/challenge in 2024.

sep 19, 6:53 pm

>118 PaulCranswick: Piles of books is an understatement for the amount of books currently surrounding me - and I am not even in my library, lol.

Great! I am glad to hear that the War Literature project is still on for next year.

sep 19, 7:36 pm

>119 alcottacre: I have approaching 10,000 physical books in my apartment, Stasia so I do relate to the nice feeling of being surrounded by books. In fairness the apartment is 3,860 ft2 so it isn't as if there isn't any space at all.

sep 19, 7:52 pm

>120 PaulCranswick: That is a large apartment - even quite generous for a house especially here in So. Cal., but then I consider that you do share it with other adults some of whom might not invite your books to cover their walls.

Redigerat: sep 19, 8:42 pm

>121 quondame: 4+1 bedrooms (the plus one is meant to be a maid's room but it is used as a utility room for ironing and the such - Erni (the world's premier maker of coffee) has "bunked" with Belle since forever.
I am lucky, Susan, in having a long corridor between the bedrooms which has bookshelves all along it - plus four overstuffed book cases in my bedroom and two in the living area one with all my poetry in it. I also have some of my books in a cabinet that Hani bought for her glassware collection and some more in boxes which will eventually got school libraries or orphanages.

I have 22 book cases in total which are largely double stacked (One book in front and one behind). On average there are 6 shelves per case and 32 books x 2 per shelf. That is approximately 8,500 books shelved. A couple of hundred in the cabinet and the rest in boxes - probably 150 cookery books of Hani in a display trolley next to her kitchen. Some coffee-table books........Probably more than 10,000 come to think of it.

sep 19, 9:42 pm

>122 PaulCranswick: I do remember a long hallway of books from earlier pictures. Alas our hallway is too narrow for such. I really have no idea how many books we have, so few of the physical books in our house have made it onto my LT catalog. If I read them since 2007 or they got into my few weeks of paperback cataloging A-D? My craft books are cataloged so I don't re-buy. But far fewer than 10,000 for sure. Well fewer for sure, far being squishy and all.

Redigerat: sep 19, 10:11 pm

>123 quondame: I really should have another go at trimming them, Susan, especially as I am planning in the short to medium term to look at relocating back to Yorkshire.

I will rent first and may keep the home here for another year at least which lessens the need to rush with the book transfers.

I have identified a place between Huddersfield and Wakefield which my brother is currently negotiating and I will take it on a two year lease until we can buy a place of our own. There appears to be lots of potential for book cases in the place too (a must for me of course).

sep 19, 10:16 pm

>124 PaulCranswick: Here is the place. It is a bit "Bronte-esque" and is very close to the Bretton sculpture park and Last of the Summer Wine country.

sep 19, 10:23 pm

Ha! Today I headed to my treadmill as it was raining outside to do 50 minutes and 2. 6 miles. Dave had to move a bunch of my books out of the way to the foyer. I'm not sure how many books I have, 750 ? maybe more, but with 1500 square feet townhouse and 3 people living here, ( our eldest son moved home nearly 3 years ago for how long, I am not sure. Not enough room for books.

Speaking of books, I finished off Western Lane last night and wrote a review on my threads I liked it a lot, I think more that the books I have read by Claire Keegan . I think I may start This Other Eden today, though I am not entirely sure.

sep 19, 10:25 pm

sep 19, 11:13 pm

>126 vancouverdeb: Fifty minutes of brisk walking is very healthy, Deb.
I have an unread TBR of physical books in Malaysia (in our apartment) of 5,787 books and that was after culling 116 books earlier in the year.

I will go and look at your thoughts on Western Lane, Deb. It isn't available here yet. The Harding is available but for around $40 and I refuse to pay that much for it.

>127 amanda4242: Thanks Amanda. It isn't closed yet so I hope I don't jinx the deal! It looks great inside too. More than likely Yasmyne, Sam and Pip would stay with us in the interim too.

Redigerat: sep 20, 7:38 am

I was able to get Western Lane and This Other Eden from the library, Paul. But many books are not available yet in Canada.

>125 PaulCranswick: That's a gorgeous looking home, Paul. I hope you do get it. Having Yasmyne and family live with you too for now sounds like a great idea. You will have your granddaughter right there, and all of you will benefit from that.

sep 20, 1:13 am

>125 PaulCranswick: Oh my! That looks so BBC historical drama - well not the cement and lamp post though I suspect modern residents appreciate them. It looks like a place of few but large rooms - unless a wing is hidden behind....

sep 20, 1:43 am

>129 vancouverdeb: I think it will give Yasmyne a chance to get some money together before trying to get on the property ladder.

Western Lane intrigues me Deb and I will try to seek out a copy.

>130 quondame: I checked Susan and it is not gaslight at least flowing through the streetlamp!
I think I have some other pictures of the place which I will try to share.

Redigerat: sep 20, 2:52 am

Other elevations of the property.

sep 20, 5:55 am

>133 FAMeulstee: It is quite nice right?

sep 20, 7:14 am

>134 PaulCranswick: 'Quite nice' doesn't do it justice, it is breathtaking!
And some garden around, I assume?

sep 20, 7:37 am

>135 FAMeulstee: There is a little bit of garden but not too much, Anita. The house was previously the Estate offices for Bretton Estate Farms.

sep 20, 7:41 am

Wow, that is quite the place Paul. Hope it comes together for you. So nice to have a place for the new family too.

sep 20, 9:01 am

>137 Kristelh: I have to persuade Hani to move from Sheffield, although she is placated by the place being near to shops, a lovely farm shop with fresh produce and the gardens of Bretton Hall to meander in.

Redigerat: sep 20, 9:55 am

>125 PaulCranswick: Ooh, lovely! Like others have said, it looks straight out of a BBC historical drama. I hope you get it!

sep 20, 9:54 am

>120 PaulCranswick: Well, my house is not even 1900 square feet, so I only have about 6000 books here :) I honestly do not know.

>125 PaulCranswick: What a lovely house!

>131 PaulCranswick: I am going to try and get Western Lane in next month, Paul, if you would care for a shared read?

Happy whatever!

sep 20, 10:14 am

>139 foggidawn: Thanks Foggi. I discussed with my brother and he is going to try and get the deal done for me this week.

>140 alcottacre: I will definitely be up for it, Stasia, if I can track a copy down.

Redigerat: sep 20, 10:36 am

>120 PaulCranswick: And here I was thinking that, living in a single family house as I do, I must have more potential book space than you do. Nope; this house is a mere 1200 sq feet. I'm not sure how many books remain uncatalogued, but the total probably leaves me closer to 4000 than 5000. (2622 are catalogued; my total LibraryThing library size is larger than that, but I also catalogue books I've read but don't own.)

sep 20, 10:42 am

>142 ArlieS: I do the same but I consciously limit wishlist inclusions as I think it skews your collection lists completely. I have a couple of thousand books read but not in my home anymore.

sep 20, 11:03 am

>132 PaulCranswick: That is beautiful.
My wife and I love British homes like that. So full of history.

sep 20, 11:12 am

Just to let you know, I received my copy of The Night of the Hunter in today's mail, so I am ready for that shared read next month too.

sep 20, 11:41 am

>144 hredwards: Hani is scared of ghosts so I still have a wee bit of persuading to do, Harold!

>145 alcottacre: You may have noticed that I bought it as planned so I will be ready to go too. xx

sep 20, 12:51 pm

>146 PaulCranswick: Oooh, is it haunted? Supposedly?

sep 20, 1:42 pm

Lol. I used to be terrified of ghosts well into my adulthood. I've gotten over it now, though.

sep 20, 2:02 pm

sep 20, 2:07 pm

Now for the really important stuff: what's the first book you will read to your granddaughter in your (fingers crossed) new home?

sep 20, 3:38 pm

>147 hredwards: No, Harold, I don't think so, but the good lady thinks any home built before Malaysia got independence must be!

>148 The_Hibernator: Hahaha Rachel, Hani is still in the scared stage!

sep 20, 3:40 pm

>149 mdoris: At least two spare rooms for when you visit the UK, Mary!

>150 amanda4242: Ooh probably something by Beatrix Potter to start off with, Amanda.

sep 20, 4:29 pm

>152 PaulCranswick: Might I recommend James Herriot's Treasury for Children? The stories are excellent and Ruth Brown's and Peter Barrett's illustrations are sublime.

sep 20, 4:46 pm

>153 amanda4242: You may indeed, Amanda - I love James Herriot. I remember reading Watership Down and The Hobbit to my kids but Pip wouldn't be near ready for those just yet.

sep 20, 5:05 pm

>132 PaulCranswick: Ah, so there is a wing in the back with an interesting cascade of smaller ones. Was this subject to a window tax at some time or is there a reason that there is only one window along the right?

sep 20, 5:16 pm

>155 quondame: I was wondering on the absence of windows on that elevation myself, Susan. I suspect it had more to do with function than fiscal prudence.

sep 20, 6:36 pm

>156 PaulCranswick: Bookshelves all along the back wall? If not in the past, well you know you won't be blocking the light!

sep 20, 6:47 pm

Wow! You have some great books going, Paul, along with some wonderful praise for The Covenant of Water. I sure hope to bookhorn that one in by the end of the year. It has been an excellent year for book releases, and it is hard to keep up.

sep 20, 7:29 pm

>157 quondame: I have seen plenty of pictures of the internals and there does seem to be plenty of space for bookcases, Susan. Interestingly the floor area is similar in size to my present apartment which I find extremely difficult to believe as it appears much bigger.

>158 msf59: I must agree, Mark, that we have been lucky with new releases over the last year or so. I am hoping we get something new from Joseph Boyden and Rohinton Mistry shortly.

sep 20, 10:56 pm

>152 PaulCranswick: How fun would that be! I'm reading The Old Ways and sure would love to have an amble along some of those paths. And I sure would love to meet you and your family!

sep 21, 12:21 am

>160 mdoris: You would be welcome there or in Kuala Lumpur, if we are here instead, anytime, Mary.

sep 21, 3:13 am

Puzzle #102

The occasional game I can see the answers clearly but there is always one connection that has five possibilities and I always guess that one wrong!

sep 21, 1:32 pm

I hate reading politics on here, but I read the other day that Prince William was doing great on a visit to New York and that 60% percent of Republicans and Democrats both found him favorable. I thought too bad we can't elect him next year. But I guess we as the US and the UK have put all that behind us. (That last bit was meant as a joke.)

sep 21, 1:50 pm

>146 PaulCranswick: Great! I am looking forward to it.

Happy whatever, Paul!

sep 21, 5:27 pm

>163 hredwards: Haha Harold that is perhaps not quite the solution to our problems! I have nothing against Will and Kate but I am not a monarchist.

>164 alcottacre: Especially as it was shortlisted!

sep 21, 5:34 pm

The Booker Prize Shortlist was announced this evening in the UK and both Tan Twan Eng and Sebastian Barry miss out, I think a little surprisingly. The shortlist is, on a fantastic night for Pauls everywhere:

This Other Eden by Paul Harding
Prophet Song by Paul Lynch
The Bee Sting by Paul Murray
Western Lane by Chetna Maroo
Study for Obedience by Sarah Bernstein
If I Survive You by Jonathan Escoffery

I have recently read Prophet Song and it must have a great chance.

sep 21, 6:15 pm

I just posted the Booker Short List on my thread. I'm quite excited about it! I agree, Prophet Song has a very good chance of taking the prize, but who knows! Certainly a good year for Paul's. I've read Old God's Times and Im a wee bit surprised it did not make it. I think many people are surprised that House of Doors didn't make it, but I have not read it. Just ordered Bee Sting, but it will take a couple of weeks to get to me. I'd been holding off on that one to see if it made the short list.

sep 21, 6:28 pm

Paul, yes I very likely will join you in a shared read of Bee Sting. I've not seen it yet, as I ordered it, and the length is a bit intimidating, but it's a good way to be sure I will read it. Thanks! My copy is supposed to arrive Oct 5th, I think. I have another shortish book, Chop Suey Nation that I am going to read around that time for a library book club. But I might be ready to tear in to The Bee Sting when it arrives.

We'll sort out the date a little later.

sep 21, 6:28 pm

>167 vancouverdeb: I was a little surprised that the Escoffery book made it as it is questionable that it is a novel at all. Disappointed for Tan and Barry as I have read the first and almost finished the second and both would have been worthy inclusions.

Fingers crossed a Paul wins!
First time ever three people with the same given name have made the shortlist.

sep 21, 6:29 pm

>168 vancouverdeb: You are on!

sep 21, 6:29 pm

Just why is there not a "Deborah" on the Booker List ? My name is so yesterday.

sep 21, 6:30 pm

>171 vancouverdeb: Well Deborah Levy was considered a contender this year but didn't make the cut!

sep 21, 7:17 pm

>164 alcottacre: What was shortlisted? I was talking about The Night of the Hunter?

>166 PaulCranswick: I cannot even begin to say how disappointed I am that Jonathan Escoffery made the shortlist and Tan Twan Eng (whose The House of Doors I have yet to read!) did not. There is no justice in this world, lol.

>168 vancouverdeb: >170 PaulCranswick: May I join in too? I have not yet read that one.

>171 vancouverdeb: I am fairly sure that there has never been a Stasia on there either, Deborah.

Redigerat: sep 21, 8:02 pm

>173 alcottacre: Hahaha it was early in the day for me - The Night of the Hunter is already on my reading desk ready, Juana!

It is stranger still as I have heard or read very few positive comments about Escoffery's book but no negative ones about Tan's. I am pro American but I do not agree with the inclusion of American authors in the Booker - The Pulitzer and most other American awards exclude non-American authors and I preferred the Booker when it celebrated Commonwealth authors more. Australia and New Zealand hardly feature these days despite producing some exciting literature.

That is great news that we will have you along too for The Bee Sting, Stasia.

I can confirm that no Stasia (or Juana) has ever made the Booker long or short lists! On the other hand Deborah Levy has been Shortlisted twice and Longlisted a further time.

Seven Pauls have either won been Shortlisted or Longlisted and they are :

Paul Scott & Paul Beatty both won
Paul Bailey, Paul Auster, Paul Harding, Paul Murray and Paul Lynch.

Most winning name is John :
Three separate Johns have won John Berger, J.M. Coetzee and John Banville.

sep 21, 8:28 pm

>174 PaulCranswick: I feel decidedly left out. Seven Pauls? Ridiculous!

I do not agree with the inclusion of American authors in the Booker I am with you there. I honestly thought (which shows how much I know about the Booker) that Americans could not be on the lists.

sep 21, 8:56 pm

>175 alcottacre: I did look very carefully for a close approximation of your name and, well, I can only apologise on behalf of the various judging panels that have overlooked the name!

American authors were admitted for consideration in 2014 and I have been opposed to it consistently, especially with the demise of the Commonwealth Writers Prize.

sep 21, 10:19 pm

sep 21, 10:19 pm

sep 21, 10:45 pm

>177 SilverWolf28: & >178 SilverWolf28: Thanks and Thank you, Silver!

sep 21, 11:09 pm

Struggled a bit with that one today:

Puzzle #103

sep 22, 1:16 am

Happy newish thread, Paul. I see that you have been bitten by the connections bug. I find that either I get those all correct from the get go or fail miserably. I like the look of your potential digs. Fingers crossed that things go your way on that one especially with all the book storage potential.

What is the War literature project?

sep 22, 2:00 am

>181 Familyhistorian: I suppose I am like you with Connections as I have played it seven times and got it six times fairly easily albeit with the odd misstep and one time failed utterly. You either see it or you don't.

Peter (my twin brother) told me that the owner wanted to mull over my offer over the weekend and he would let Peter know on Monday. I have worked the deal out over two years and reduced his required rental but will pay him yearly in advance. Let's see.

The War Literature project is an idea at the moment but in nascent form it was to concentrate on literature relating to one particular conflict on a monthly basis.

sep 22, 2:06 am

Friday lunchtime additions :

354. Study for Obedience by Sarah Bernstein
355. Bournville by Jonathan Coe
356. If I Survive You by Jonathan Escoffery
357. Someday, Maybe by Onyi Nwabineli
358. The Whalebone Theatre by Joanna Quinn
359. The Fraud by Zadie Smith

Redigerat: sep 28, 6:36 am

I plan to have a regular Best of Current British read every month and anyone is welcome to join me to read along.

I will try to fit one in next week and one per month for each month. I will alternate between reading a female author and a male author to balance my reading.

Tentative Plan :

September : Black Butterflies by Priscilla Morris
October : Small Worlds by Caleb Azumah Nelson
November : Penance by Eliza Clark
December : Cuddy by Benjamin Myers

I also welcome suggestions of new or newish books (I would say published within a year or two from the present) to try in future months.

sep 22, 8:43 am

>125 PaulCranswick: Paul, that house! It's fabulous!

Is there place left in the Bee Sting reading group?

sep 22, 8:45 am

>185 DianaNL: I will always ensure that room is made for you, Diana. xx

Redigerat: sep 22, 8:59 am

>186 PaulCranswick: Thank you xx

sep 22, 9:10 am

>187 DianaNL: My pleasure, Diana. I will send you a PM or post to your thread when we are likely to go. Deb is supposed to receive the book on 5 October so it will not be before that date before we start. x

sep 22, 9:25 am

September 2000 had a few exceptional albums "Music" is one of Madonna's best and my favourite would be Ryan Adams' "Heartbreaker" but I am going to choose Sailing to Philadelphia by Mark Knopfler

I was regularly driving between Johor Bahru and Kuala Lumpur in those days and it was often accompanied by Knopfler's distinctive guitar playing. This is a performance of the opener, "What it is"

sep 22, 9:34 am

September 2001 is forever etched on the consciousness of the world because of those terrible events on the eleventh day of that month.

Ryan Adams album Gold was released two weeks after that day.

The video of the song "New York, New York" was recorded in the city on 7 September and is a bit moving to watch even now.

"I still love you New York!"

sep 22, 9:40 am

In September 2022 Suede released their fifth album and have subsequently disowned but I really liked it.

A New Morning was never released in the USA.

It is as good and more polished than some of their earlier music but possibly lacks some of the bravura.

sep 22, 9:51 am

September 2003 and another Brit Indie band, Starsailor, released Silence is Easy.

Great songs from the band from the North West of England - this is the title track:

sep 22, 10:02 am

It is September 2004 and I am close to home in nearby Huddersfield and close to the house pictured in >132 PaulCranswick: above.

Embrace is a favourite band and their fourth album Out of Nothing established them as a successful albums band:

This is the lovely opening single written for them by Coldplay.: "Gravity"

sep 22, 10:41 am

>176 PaulCranswick: Well, I appreciate you checking. I shall now have to write a book and have it longlisted for the Booker since Americans are allowed to qualify :)

>183 PaulCranswick: If you want to do a shared read for Study for Obedience, I am in. I hope you enjoy the Escoffery book more than I did! Nice haul as usual, Juan. I will be posting my weekly haul to the 'This Just In' thread shortly.

>184 PaulCranswick: If I was not already booked with my monthly challenges, I would join you.

>185 DianaNL: We would love to have you, Diana! The more, the merrier. I love seeing different points-of-view from the various readers.

Happy whatever, Paul!

sep 22, 4:53 pm

>194 alcottacre: I will watch out for your critically lauded debut!

I can start Study for Obedience any time, Stasia, just let me know.

sep 22, 6:51 pm

>125 PaulCranswick: >132 PaulCranswick: Looks lovely Paul, fingers crossed it works out.

sep 22, 7:00 pm

>196 Caroline_McElwee: I am getting cramps from having both toes and fingers crossed!
Lovely to see you, Caroline. x

Redigerat: sep 22, 7:21 pm

BOOK #119

Kim Jiyoung, Born 1982 by Cho Nam-Joo
Date Published : 2016
Origin of Author : South Korea
Pages : 163 pp

I have been working embedded in Korean chaebol companies on and off since 1996. In Samsung C&T, I personally know about 250 Korean colleagues of which a mere 5 are ladies. These ladies have to be better than their male colleagues just to survive and receive decidedly less in terms of remuneration. Korea has the most misogynistic and gender-biased workplace among all OECD countries.

This shortish novel shines a light on the awful disparity between that society's treatment of boys/girls and then men/women - the survival of their conception, the food they get to eat, the money lavished on them by parents, their educational, work and life opportunities. It is a bit heavy-handed on occasions in making its point but it certainly does have a point to make.


sep 22, 7:27 pm

sep 22, 7:31 pm

>132 PaulCranswick: I don't have it yet, Nina, so I hope it doesn't turn out to be Ow!

sep 23, 12:05 pm

>195 PaulCranswick: It will be October for sure, Paul. You want to start it on the first?

>198 PaulCranswick: Adding that one to the BlackHole!

Happy whatever, Paul!

sep 23, 12:21 pm

>201 alcottacre: Can do Stasia. It is a slim wee tome so I don't think it will take us that long.

sep 23, 12:53 pm

BOOK #120

The Lonely Skier by Hammond Innes
Date of Publication : 1947
Origin of Author : UK
Pages : 176 pp

Nazis, missing gold and the Dolomites as a wonderful backdrop to this suspenseful tale and it is no surprise that this was one of Hammond Innes' most successful books.

A quick read and a pretty enjoyable one.

sep 23, 8:46 pm

September 2005 saw the scrumptious Katie Melua release her second album Piece by Piece.

In an album of numbers, the highlight is Nine Million Bicycles......lovely.

sep 23, 8:57 pm

Scottish band The Fratellis released Costello Music to much approval in September 2006.

Unremittingly catchy. This is "Chelsea Dagger"

sep 23, 9:06 pm

By September 2007 we are in Canada for the uplifting country rock sounds of Blue Rodeo. Small Miracles is one of my favourite albums of theirs.

This is "This Town"

sep 23, 9:33 pm

September 2008 has a number of albums that I still listen to : Ladyhawke, Jem, Kings of Leon, Mogwai and the one I eventually chose Ben Folds.

He released Way to Normal which has his usual zippy, sardonic tunes in abundance.

This is "You Don't Know Me"

sep 23, 9:43 pm

Singer songwriter David Gray is a throwback to those days when people bothered about melody and the craft of their music.

His album Draw the Line is, I think his most consistent.

Two of the songs are almost weekly on my playlist. Transformation is my favourite song of his but I also love this duet that closes the album "Full Steam" where he performs with Annie Lennox.

sep 24, 1:26 am

Let me know what you and Stasia think of Study for Obedience. I've heard people say that it is " impenetrable" , and " I don't understand what happened" .

sep 24, 1:44 am

>209 vancouverdeb: Will do certainly, Deb. Probably a week away from finding out as Stasia and myself agreed to start it on 1st.

sep 24, 7:17 am

Out of the noughties and Brandon Flowers released the excellent Flamingo

In September 2010 we were caught in the "Crossfire"

sep 24, 7:24 am

Ed Sheeran is monumentally popular as a folk-indie singer songwriter and he released his debut long player in September 2011 which is the same month that the equally talented but less heralded Ben Howard released his own debut.

Every Kingdom is an assured debut.

This is "Only Love"

sep 24, 7:31 am

September 2012 saw the sophomore release of Mumford and Sons - Babel

This is the wonderful "I Will Wait"

Redigerat: sep 24, 8:34 am

Manic Street Preachers have been at the forefront of alternative music in the UK since the early nineties.

In September 2013 they returned to form with a stripped down classic Rewind the Film.

This is the moving "This Sullen Welsh Heart" accompanied by a video which depicts the disastrous Miner's Strike of 1984 which resulted in the devastation of the Welsh Valleys and the Coalfields of Yorkshire and the Midlands. Some of these places have not properly recovered 40 years later.

sep 24, 8:41 am

I have been a fan of Lori McKenna ever since I listened to her music by accident. I always bought the music of Loreena McKennitt and was excited to see a new release "Unglamorous". Some times a mistake can be beneficial.

Her album Numbered Doors was released

This is the title track:

Redigerat: sep 24, 3:37 pm

>1 PaulCranswick: What an incredible photo, Paul. I would love to wander down that street!

Also happy new thread! I'm a few days behind... 🤭

sep 24, 6:52 pm

>216 PlatinumWarlock: Thank you, Lavinia. Lovely as always to see you here. x

sep 24, 8:26 pm

BOOK #121

The Covenant of Water by Abraham Verghese
Date of Publication : 2023
Origin of Author : Ethiopia
Pages : 715 pp

What makes a great novel?

Wonderful and believable characters?
Tremendous plotting and compelling narrative?
Transportation to lands and places unknown until you can visualize, taste, smell and feel what the characters are described as doing?
Prose that sings off the page and engages the reader utterly?

This book has all of these and is truly a great novel.

I don't get to judge prizes. I don't get to give out awards, but I can bestow accolades. This book has been a wonderful companion and friend for the last weeks and so much so that I wanted to savour all of its 80 chapters.

There was a short pause when I thought this book was simply too long, especially when we lost one of the major characters with a couple of hundred pages to go. Wouldn't this have been better and more digestible in the chewable chunks afforded by a trilogy. And then I got to the end and realized why it had to be so and why it was a near flawless piece of work.

Go and get it. Go tell your friends. Please read this book.

sep 24, 10:08 pm

Puzzle #106

Limped over the line there.

sep 24, 10:11 pm

>218 PaulCranswick: I have to find some time to read my copy of The Covenant of Water , Paul. I really loved his first book, Cutting For Stone . Nice review!

sep 24, 10:17 pm

>220 vancouverdeb: Thank you, Deb. What a splendid reading month it has been and you are partly at least to be thanked for encouraging me to participate in our shared read.

Prophet Song is a very different type of writing and I expect it will probably win the Booker, but The Covenant of Water is the type of storytelling that simply envelops you.

I love to be told a story. I always have. This is storytelling par excellence.

sep 25, 2:27 pm

Stereophonics have been making good music since the mid 90s. From Wales with diminutive lead singer and writer, Kelly Jones (like me a huge fan of Leeds United) their mix of edgy rock and ballads has lead to me buying all their music (before I could save it all on spotify anyhow).

In September 2015 Keep the Village Alive was their ninth studio album and went to No. 1 in the UK.

This is them at their mellow best with "Song for the Summer"

sep 25, 2:46 pm

The Divine Comedy is a vehicle for the eclectic musings of Neil Hannon. These days he can be a tad hit and miss but his albums are always a joy. In September 2016 he released Foreverland.

The lead single was the singular "Catherine the Great"

sep 25, 3:30 pm

>218 PaulCranswick: Well, I am dodging that BB. Told you it was good :)

Happy whatever, Paul!

sep 25, 3:31 pm

>224 alcottacre: Like minds and all that, Stasia, as I was just at your digs.

You did indeed tell me it was good.

sep 25, 3:46 pm

>225 PaulCranswick: I am very glad to see that you have good taste and enjoyed it :)

Yes, I was just at my digs answering your very tough question. . .

sep 25, 4:14 pm

>132 PaulCranswick: Did you get the place you wanted? Please report!

sep 25, 5:14 pm

>29 PaulCranswick: Armatrading is wonderful. I’ve only got one of her LPs, but I love to listen to it. Every cut is good.

>125 PaulCranswick: Wow! It would be like living in the Pride and Prejudice novel. I missed your last thread; do you have an idea when you’ll be moving?

It will be so amazing to be able to be with your granddaughter as she grows!

sep 25, 6:53 pm

>226 alcottacre: I did some reading, took a shower, some coffee and saw your response. I must go and look for that book!

>227 mdoris: Not yet concluded, Mary. I have a feeling that the owner is waiting other offers too. You will be the first to know, but surprisingly Hani is on board with it - it means she needs to leave Sheffield.

sep 25, 6:57 pm

>228 Storeetllr: She has long been a favourite artist of mine, Mary. I have literally all her recorded and released music - hardly a dud amongst them.

Well I have the Pride and Hani can have the Prejudice (she is oftentimes prejudiced against me!), but in truth I would make a very poor Mr. Darcy.

It is looking set that December may finally bring my permanent relocation. In 2024 we may no longer have a Malaysian correspondent.

sep 25, 8:01 pm

>229 PaulCranswick: As I noted on my thread, you really need to get the entire trilogy. The books are excellent!

sep 25, 9:12 pm

A couple of my library patrons have told me that Covenant of Water is well worth reading, Paul, and if it weren't already on my TBR list, your review would've put it there. I do think I'll either wait for it to come off the new shelf (giving me six weeks to read it) or buy it myself, though.

sep 25, 9:35 pm

>231 alcottacre: I will do that, Stasia. xx

>232 bell7: It is a wonderful book, Mary. I must say I have made a place for it in my essential reading bookcase.

sep 25, 10:31 pm

Puzzle #107

sep 26, 12:28 am

BOOK #122

Old God's Time by Sebastian Barry
Date of Publication : 2023
Origin of Author : Ireland
Pages : 261 pp

This is not, as I have seen reviewed elsewhere, a police procedural. That is like saying beluga caviar is fish eggs. It is true, it is true, it is misleading.

Barry puts us inside the tired, grieving and guilt ridden mind of Tom Kettle, retired policeman, widower, father of two also no longer with him. The equivocation and misdirection of the sensations being felt by our subject are expertly and sympathetically drawn. They are as coherent as they are confused. If that doesn't make sense to you well life often doesn't either and that is much the point here.

The reopening of a cold case into abusive clerics and a visit from ex-colleagues brings dread matters he had half buried scurrying to the surface.

Excellent and recommended.

sep 26, 12:35 am

Old God's Time is the third of this year's longlist that I have read this year and I have to say that I am hugely impressed by the quality of all three. I think that The Covenant of Water which was not longlisted is the best novel I have read this decade but I would rate the three of the longlist:

1. Prophet Song by Paul Lynch
2. The House of Doors by Tan Twan Eng
3. Old God's Time by Sebastian Barry

All three are very different works and it is incredibly difficult to choose between them. I just think Prophet Song's juxtaposing government overreach and the outward migration crisis to Ireland is wonderfully realised. Tan's book, I have to set my Malaysian bias to one side and, whilst it is the most conventional of the three, it is spledidly written and its elegance matches the urbane subject matter. Barry's is a tremendous feat of the imagination basically inhabiting the mind of another. My ranking is not cast in stone.

sep 26, 12:44 am

Nice review of Old God's Time, Paul. I really loved it too. Of the 5 I have read from the Booker Longlist , Western Lane , Prophet Song, A Spell of Good Things and This Other Eden, Prophet Song and Old God's Time would tie for first place for me.

I'm happy to read that you may be moved back to the UK as early as December of 2024. I know you've been looking forward to that for some years now.

sep 26, 12:49 am

>237 vancouverdeb: No, Deb. It is December of 2023!

I could have thrown a blanket over all three of them and could fairly have placed them in any order. I don't know whether any of the others will grab me in the same way but it will need to be a good book to beat Paul Lynch.

sep 26, 12:57 am

>238 PaulCranswick: Duh! I knew that, but somehow typed 2024. I agree, Paul Lynch is the book to beat from the short list.

sep 26, 7:29 am

>239 vancouverdeb: Certainly for me, Deb, as it is the only one I have read so far!

sep 26, 8:15 pm

My excellent reading month is continuing as I am absorbed in Black Butterflies. This book also really should have made the Booker Longlist. What a wonderful debut novel.

sep 27, 1:24 am

BOOK #123

Black Butterflies by Priscilla Morris
Date of Publication : 2023
Origin of Author : UK / Bosnia (Yugoslavia)
Pages : 278 pp

Can fraternity survive extreme adversity?

Is it worth to stay and fight to hold on to house and job and normalcy or is discretion required?

What is the meaning of dislocation?

Are people of different ethnic backgrounds fundamentally different to each other that the ties of nationhood cannot any longer withstand the mistrust, resentment and, indeed, hatred of one for the other?

I am not sure that this novel, set amongst the siege of Sarajevo, fully answers these questions? But the point is to ask the questions. And keep on asking and not forgetting.

An accomplished first novel.

sep 27, 1:50 am

>242 PaulCranswick: I quite enjoyed Black Butterflies too, Paul. I read back when I was reading from the Women's Prize Longlist. Those prize lists do get us reading different books.

Redigerat: sep 27, 3:38 am

>243 vancouverdeb: That is very true, Deb. I do not see that I would have read this without it being included in the Women's Prize list. I have bought the entire longlist of 16 books this year but so far only managed to read 5 of them.

My ranking of the five I have read:

1. The Marriage Portrait by Maggie O'Farrell
2. Black Butterflies by Priscilla Morris
3. Trespasses by Louise Kennedy
4. Wandering Souls by Cecile Pin
5. I'm a Fan by Sheena Patel

I thought O'Farrell's book was excellent and 2,3,& 4 worthy award nominees and all debut novels with plenty of promise.
I thought I'm a Fan was execrable.

sep 27, 4:08 am

I’ve also read 5 from the Women’s Prize Longlist , Paul . My rankings would be as follows.
Tied for 1st Demon Copperhead and Trespasses
2 Black Butterflies
3 The Bandit Queens
5 Wandering Souls

sep 27, 6:51 am

>245 vancouverdeb: Ooh Deb, you really need to read The Marriage Portrait as I need to get to Demon Copperhead.

sep 27, 11:55 am

>244 PaulCranswick: We’ll, you’ve hit me with a BB for the O’Farrell novel. It does looks like my cuppa!

sep 27, 11:59 am

>235 PaulCranswick: I already have that one scheduled to read in October. If I had not, your review would make me read it then anyway!

>236 PaulCranswick: The House of Doors is coming up for me in November. I am really looking forward to reading it. Currently Prophet Song is firmly atop my list for the Booker.

>242 PaulCranswick: I am hoping to have a copy in my hot little hands so that I can give it a read in October.

Happy whatever, Paul!

sep 27, 12:36 pm

>218 PaulCranswick: You got me, but I will wait until next year when the paperback is out Paul. Something to look forward to.

sep 27, 4:12 pm

>247 Storeetllr: I don't think that there is much doubt that you'll get along with that one, Mary.

>248 alcottacre: Barry's book is slow moving but very well done, Stasia.

I will be interested to see how highly you rate Tan's book especially in comparison with his earlier work.

I'm sure that you'll appreciate that one.

sep 27, 4:13 pm

>249 Caroline_McElwee: It is glorious good old-fashioned storytelling, Caroline.

sep 27, 4:16 pm

>248 alcottacre: I am sure I will appreciate it too, Paul. I thought it was scheduled for November but no, I have to wait until December, as I am taking part in the group read of it.

Slow moving books really do not bother me :)

sep 27, 4:29 pm

>252 alcottacre: Deb rated it just as highly as Prophet Song whilst I thought it was slightly behind it but not by a country mile either.

sep 27, 5:16 pm

>238 PaulCranswick: Gosh; are you planning to leave these sunny climes so soon? I'll have to plan to meet you in the UK then.

sep 27, 5:17 pm

>254 humouress: Planning to, Nina, but then I again I have been planning to for several years now and still haven't managed it.

sep 27, 5:19 pm

>255 PaulCranswick: Which will come first; your trip to Singapore or your move to the UK? Maybe I'll even make it to KL first!

sep 27, 5:48 pm

>256 humouress: We will find a way, neighbour!

sep 28, 12:20 am

You should think about joining Mark and I on our read of Singapore Grip. Some of your observations and input would be helpful. Boots on the ground, so-to-speak. Or have you already read this book?

sep 28, 2:18 am

>258 benitastrnad: It was my first read by JG Farrell, Benita. I did enjoy it quite a bit and the parodying of the place, the complacent people and the times is exquisite. I am sure that you will enjoy it. I will certainly touch base with Mark's thread a fair bit if you guys want some local or locale clarifications.

sep 28, 3:32 pm

>253 PaulCranswick: Having loved both of Tan Twan Eng's previous books, I have no doubt but that I am going to love this one too.

Happy whatever, brother!

BTW - The acquisition list I am going to post tomorrow is going to be large - at least, large for me. BAD is hitting me hard currently, lol.

sep 28, 3:39 pm

>244 PaulCranswick: When does the final award come out? Has it already been awarded?

sep 28, 6:23 pm

>260 alcottacre: Yes I am sure that you'll like Tan's latest, Stasia.

I look forward to glorying in your new acquisitions!

>261 The_Hibernator: Lovely to see you, Rachel.

The Women's Prize was awarded this year to Demon Copperhead on 14 June.
A bit poor really that I haven't got round to reading it yet!

okt 6, 12:03 pm

>109 PaulCranswick: I loved Cutting for Stone and I was excited to find The Covenant of Water in a charity shop, though it's a dauntingly huge hardback and cost more than I usually pay in such places.

I also read Black Butterflies, finally - I'd been borrowing and returning library copies for a few months - quite a few of the longlist have come up as Kindle offers but not this one. I quite liked that it asked more questions than answers, and that, while shocking, its portrayal of the conflict was clearly very different from how it's portrayed in the news.

I enjoyed The Dictionary of Lost Words though I think it's less literary than some of these award list books, and I'm looking forward to The Bookbinder of Jericho - my mum's parents worked at Oxford University Press and lived nearby, in a house which was originally rather posh tied accommodation, though they did buy it later, so these novels have a particular appeal for me - that bit of Oxford carries so many memories of childhood/teenage years (and being an actual young adult, as I was 21/25 when they died). My grandmother, Winnie worked in Reference in the 1960s - not sure of exact dates but she would have turned 60 just after I was born, Dan was a little bit younger than her, and there was a shelving unit taken up with the dictionary and lots of other reference books about.

okt 6, 4:37 pm

>263 elkiedee: Lovely to see you posting here, Luci and I very much enjoyed reading about your links to Oxford. I agree that Pip Williams' book is not literary as such but none the less enjoyable for that!

I liked the approach of Black Butterflies and was absolutely blown away by The Covenant of Water.
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