I read more in August than in September and October combined. I was busy with other stuff on most of the September weekends and as weekends are my main reading time, I naturally couldn’t read as much as I usually do. I’m lumping September in with October, which was a better reading month, but also not optimal. I was on vacation and did things with my family and only read a bit every now and then. Still, October was passable, as my vacation only took up the first half of the month. Here’s the list of books read:
Murasaki Shikibu and Royall Tyler (trsl.), The Tale of Genji.
I read a few pages, but not very many. I need to prioritize it in November and December to get through it this year.
- Roger Lonsdale (ed.), Eighteenth-Century Women Poets.
I’m about three-quarters done. Some of the poems in this anthology are very good. It’s a mixed bag, but no worse that poems by the more well-known male 18th century poets. I’m enjoying it.
- Heinrich Detering (ed.), Reclams Buch der deutschen Gedichte.
I continued reading this poetry collection in September (too unwieldy to take on vacation). I’m not yet done but should be done soon. I quite like my foray into German poetry.
- Robert Alter, The Pleasures of Reading in an Ideological Age.
A short book that explains the elements of style that distinguish literature from other texts. I enjoyed it a lot.
- Adrienne Rich, Essential Essays: Culture, Politics, and the Art of Poetry.
This was a kind of companion to Rich’s Selected Poems that I read in April. Some of the essays were very good, others I didn’t find particularly memorable.
- Mitchell Zuckoff, Fall and Rise: The Story of 9/11.
Inspired by the 20th anniversary of 9/11. A detailed look at what happened during the terrorist attacks, with a focus on people’s experiences. Terrible and moving.
- Michael Schmidt, The Novel: A Biography.
An amazing tome that I spent about three weeks reading.
- Laurie R. King, The Murder of Mary Russell.
The 14th in the Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes series. Not bad, but not one of my favourites.
- Louise Erdrich, The Bingo Palace.
The next novel in the Love Medicine series. It was great. My review is here.
- Halldor Laxness, Fish Can Sing.
The first book I’ve read by this author from Iceland, who won the Nobel Prize. I once had a Nordic phase, where I read all the Icelandic Sagas (very good) and I’ve always wanted to try a novel by Laxness. I enjoyed it a lot and am up for reading others by him.
- Anthony Trollope, Phineas Finn.
The second of Trollope’s Parliamentary series. I read the first one, Can You Forgive Her, last year but never got around to writing a review. I still remember it because it was great. This one had a slow start but improved in the second half. My only Victober read for this year.
- Helga Marten, Juttas großer Tag (German for Jutta’s Big Day).
I found this one, which used to be a great favourite during my childhood, while I was sorting boxes of old books to get rid of. I reread it, still mostly liked it, and kept it for nostalgic reasons.
- Robert O’Brien, The Silver Crown.
Also one of the books I discovered, reread and kept. A classic fantasy story
- Michelle Magorian, Goodnight Mister Tom and Back Home.
Two books set in or just after WWII in the UK. The first is about a young boy sent to the country for safety, the second about a young girl just returned from America, where she had been sent during the war and the difficulties she faced on her return. An awful depiction of boarding school life – quite the anti-Blyton version. Both books were good reads.
I plan to write more detailed reviews for most of these books, so I didn’t go into much detail in this list. I’m rather behind with my reviews. As I only did one post in October, I haven’t managed to review the books I read in August. This will give me lots of topics to write about this month when I’m planning a post per day, to get back into the groove and catch up on things. I managed it last year and hope to manage it this year too – as I said before, it’s my NaNoWriMo project.
Keep safe, world.