Howdy folks, how is everyone? Long time, no post. I say long time, what is ‘long’? What is ‘time’ for that matter?
You may have noticed my slight absence, you may have not. For the eagle-eyed among you, you’ll have figured out the reason: this past week I was on holiday in Washington DC and NYC. It was SO MUCH FUN and it was my first time visiting the US so it was very much a Big Deal for me. I saw a lot of the sights and thoroughly took my mind off work and I loved every minute of it (except perhaps the minutes I spent on the subway).
All of this is to say that I’ve returned to England now but I feel a bit off-kilter with my reading and blogging at the moment. My suitcase is still full and I have yet to unpack or do any laundry or grocery shopping and I’m existing in a post-holiday state of denial – procrastinating by blogging seems to be the only solution to this so here I am. I’ll undoubtedly be writing up a word vomit/wrap-up of my holiday (for posterity’s sake, not bragging, I promise!), but in the meantime I’d like to take stock and get my reading back on track, for the sake of my own sanity, if no one else’s. So here we are…
At the moment I have quite a few books on the go, most of which I semi-abandoned when I went to the US because I didn’t want to take them along with me, but now I’m back I really ought to return to them with a renewed sense of purpose.
The Tropic of Serpents (Lady Trent #2) by Marie Brennan
I LOVED the first book in this series: A Natural History of Dragons and I’m already a firm lover of the Lady Trent memoirs. It’s like Austen meets dragons with a side order of sass about the whole genre of travel writing and a woman’s place in the literary world… I mean… why wouldn’t you want to read that? I should have a (gushing) review up for the first book soon but, in the meantime, I really need to pick this sequel back up.
A Dance with Dragons: Dreams & Dust (ASOIAF #5.1) by George R.R. Martin
This book is long, ok guys? It was even split into two volumes in the UK because it was so long. This is the first of the two volumes and it’s also not keeping me hooked like the fourth book did. It mostly follows characters who I don’t much care for, so it’s becoming increasingly difficult to care about it at all. But I’m a completionist at heart (if not in practice) so I want to get caught up on the series before George R.R. Martin finally drops The Winds of Winter – I think I have a good couple of years left to read this though so all is not lost yet.
The Light Fantastic (Discworld #2) by Terry Pratchett
You know that feeling where you don’t devote 100% of your attention to what you’re reading and next thing you know you’re riding on a cloud with a somewhat disgruntled druid? That sums up the reading experience of the Discworld. It’s a set of books that you can’t really read in fits and starts (as I’ve been trying to do) because it rarely makes any sense and that’s kind of the whole point and the beauty in it, but it also makes it difficult to read sporadically. Needless to say, I’m struggling with this one. But I really would like to make a proper effort with more of Pratchett’s works since I enjoyed the first book, The Colour of Magic, and his collaboration with Neil Gaiman, Good Omens, is one of my all-time favourite books. So I must try harder, must do better.
War & Peace by Leo Tolstoy
This is the one that hurts the most – I’ve completely fell behind with the War and Peace Newbies Readalong and I’m gutted about it because I’ve loved reading along with the other participants and blogging update posts every week. It has really enhanced my reading experience and is one of the main (/only) reasons that I’ve managed to stick with it and get as far as I have through this mammoth of a novel. I have no hope in hell of finishing on-time and/or putting up wrap-up posts for the remaining sections of the novel so my reading of this is going to be belated, if I do end up finishing it at all. (But I’m over 1000 pages in, I can’t really quit now, can I?) Like I said, I’m gutted about this one. Especially since I even took War & Peace with me to the US and guess how many pages I read over there? Not a single effing one. I am so annoyed with myself. Plus, as an odd motivational tactic, I made Liz promise to hit me with the book if I didn’t read any of it whilst we were on holiday so… yeah… she now owes me a beating with War & Peace, just to add insult to injury. Once that’s over maybe I’ll pick it back up – I just don’t know how to quit you, War & Peace.
That’s about it – that’s what I’m officially currently reading or, at least, trying to. And as I type this I’m still looking longingly at my bookshelves wanting to start something new. I am so bad at being a monogamous reader that it’s not even funny any more. Wish me luck for resuming my current reads?
What are you reading at the moment? How are you finding it? Do you have any recommendations for books you’d read and loved and/or that you think I might like? Please do leave your comments below as I’d love to hear them.