Monthly Book Binge: May 2011

30 May, 2011

OK, you guys thought I was just being good, right? Well, um, wrong ‘coz I couldn’t help myself and ended up with the following.

I bought:

13:55 Eastern Standard Time by Nick Alexander – for my book club which I couldn’t attend in the end because of all my driving stuff.

Women Writing About Men by Jane Miller – how could I not get this? I’m interested in the different ways writers portray the opposite sex so thought this was appropriate for my, ahem, research.

Wayward Girls and Wicked Women
edited by Angela Carter – a collection of short stories by women. Bazinga.

That Kind of Woman: Stories from the Left Bank by Bronte Adams and Trudi Tate – do I really have to give a reason for this?

Skippy Dies by Paul Murray – this has been all over book blogs like a rash and I admit I caved under the hype. Not sure whether it’s my thing, but hey, it’s supposed to be good, right?

Twelve by Jasper Kent – I’ve been DYING to read this book about a mysterious group of mercenary soldiers that helps out a Russian army in the 1800s. Something to do with fangs, apparently.

Engineers of the Soul: In the Footsteps of Stalin’s Writers by Frank Westerman – non-fiction, hurray! It’s about writers and Stalin’s Russia. I’m thinking lots of censorship, prison and exile to Siberia.

Holy Disorders by Edmund Crispin – I’ve got Crispin’s The Moving Toyshop featuring Oxford don and part-time detective Gervase Fenn which I’ve heard lots of good things about. So I had to get this.

Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger – I really enjoyed The Time-Traveller’s Wife which I was expecting to be some kind of a soppy romance. Don’t get me wrong, I like my romance but not in the drown you with saccharine tweeness way. But as Niffenegger’s second novel is about Highgate Cemetary and twins, I couldn’t really resist. Especially now since the hype’s died down.

The Rehearsal by Eleanor Catton – I’ve heard lots of good things about this book. That is all.

The Last Resort by Carmen Posadas – I’ve been stalking this book for YEARS since I first saw it in a bookshop. So I think it’s fair to say I HAD to get it when I found it in my local charity shop. A South American crime novel.

The Hours by Michael Cunningham – I was bowled over by the film and was really impressed by the treatment of depression and women. So I wanted to see whether the book will be better. Plus Cunningham’s a famous writer, right?

Bangkok 8 by John Burdett – I’ve been stalking this book for years as well and kept finding the later books in this detective series set in Thailand. Not a title you’ll find that often in a charity shop, let me tell you.

Granta 110 Sex issue – Ok, before you start calling me a closet perv, it’s got stories by Jeannette Winterson, Natsuo Kirino, Jennifer Egan, Dave Eggers and other proper writers, ok?


Mariana by Monica Dickens – Ok, I bought into the hype, alright? Lots of brilliant reviews of the Persephone version, but mine’s a Penguin:)

The Dark Philosophers by Gwyn Thomas – The title alone made me buy it. But it’s actually a book I’ve been curious for ages.

The Discovery of Heaven by Harry Mulisch – very serendipitous find as Iris on Books is doing a readalong at the moment. Mulisch is considered to be one of the finest Dutch writers.

The Adamantine Palace by Stephen Deas – this is another fantasy title that’s been getting lots of love from reviewers.

I got sent the following:

The Possessed: Adventures with Russian Book and the People Who Read Them by Elif Batumen – from the lovely people at Granta Books. I’m still planning to read War & Peace this year. I haven’t forgotten.

The Suicide Shop by Jean Teulé – from the lovely people at Gallic Press. Set in a near distant future France.

Monsieur Montespan by Jean Teulé – about the cuckolded husband of the Sun King’s mistress.

Alva & Irva and Observatory Mansions by Edward Carey – from lovely Simon because I passed my driving test. So sweet! Two books which he really enjoyed and which I thought sounded very intriguing. I’m looking forward to reading them!

And from the library:

BUtterfield 8 by John O’Hara – for my book group. I’d seen the film featuring Elizabeth Taylor years ago and have been wanting to read this book for a while.

Special Assignments by Boris Akunin – I’ve been wanting to go back and start reading Akunin’s Erast Fandorin books again after seeing him talk. This is the 5th in the series and the one with which I stalled. See, I do give books a second chance.

Fever Dreams by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child – yay, the latest in the Agent Predergast series. You know how much I love him and his Sherlockian ways, right?

Ok, I better get cracking and read some books.

16 Responses to “Monthly Book Binge: May 2011”

  1. Harriet Says:

    Good grief this is scary — don’t you get a bit overwhelmed sometimes? I know I do — so many books, so little time. But what fun you will have!

  2. Well done, Sakura, bravo! I salute you and I salute your book buying madness! I will be posting mine this afternoon (and you’re in good company, let me tell you ;))

  3. amymckie Says:

    Love the piles of books! Always good to let loose and make a big purchase every now and again I think 🙂 Happy reading!

  4. That is quite a haul! Most impressive.

  5. Amazing haul – Skippy Dies was amazing, and I adore The Hours – probably one of my all-time favourites. And, an Angela Carter is always a good thing.

    Happy days! Enjoy the reading 😀

  6. winstonsdad Says:

    wow loads of books I bve discovery of heaven am reading it bvut need catch up with Iris this week ,all the best stu

  7. Steph Says:

    You got some really great books in this pile! The Rehearsal is a really wonderful book that I definitely think more people should read, so I was happy to see you picked up a copy! And I’ve been wanting to read Skippy Dies for ages, but haven’t been able to find a reasonably priced copy (and preferably, I’d like the three-volume paperback set as opposed to the hulking hardback).

  8. I really enjoyed Her Fearful Symmetry and I hope to read Mariana and Skippy Dies. Great haul!

  9. I love this! I totally go on book buying binges; I mean it could be a lot worse, right?! Enjoy the reading; everyone needs good literature in their life!

  10. Fëanor Says:

    Holy Disorders! Carmen Posadas! Skippy Dies! Have read only three of your immense list of possibilities. Enjoy.

  11. Violet Says:

    HaHaHa. And I thought I was “bad” when it came to buying books. Booksellers and publishers love us!! Hope you enjoy your haul. Love Angela Carter, and ‘Her Fearful Symmetry’and ‘The Hours’ are great. Happy reading!

  12. sakura Says:

    Thanks all, glad to know I’m amongst friends;P To be fair, the haul was over two months, otherwise I think I seriously need to go into rehab!

  13. Kinna Says:

    Wayward Girls and Wicked Women is wonderful. Enjoy your pile!

  14. That Kind of Woman is an amazing anthology and Wayward Girls and Wicked Women features some great stories too.

    The Hours is also an all-time favourite of mine.

  15. JoV Says:

    You have got some really good books there Sakura! I wish I was in your shoes. 🙂 From your pile I have only read “Her Fearful Symmetry” which is not as good as her first book. Authors that you have mentioned in Granta 110 Sex are my favourites, I’m going to check this out.

    Enjoy your loot!

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