Hurray, it’s back – one of my two favourite events in the blogging year! (The other is Nonfiction November, which is still quite a while away). 20 Books of Summer, hosted by Cathy @ 746 Books, is back. Last year, I actually did it – wonders will never cease – though admittedly a few of those were cookbook rather than novel reviews. I’m expecting to have an incredibly busy July at work, so it’s definitely a bad idea to participate, but I’m participating anyway!

One of the reasons I succeeded last year, I think, is that I intentionally chose a list filled with books from different genres – so this time, I’ve picked my books from different sources. Five books from my Classics Club list, five from my Transmongolian Reading Challenge, five that have been recommended on Strong Sense of Place, and five books that have been lingering on my Kindle. I’ve written before about how much I enjoy the Strong Sense of Place podcast, but although I very frequently add books to my TBR as a result of the show, I have yet to actually acquire and read any of them. I have therefore decided to treat myself to a few of the books I’ve added to my wishlist since the podcast has been running. Of all my categories, this is the one most subject to change as their third series just started, so new books might take priority over the ones I’ve listed here! Between my Transmongolian challenge and the Strong Sense of Place books, I’m looking forward to travelling all over the shop this summer, pandemic or no pandemic.

Classics Club

  1. Cover Her Face – PD James
  2. The House of Mirth – Edith Wharton
  3. To Sir, With Love – ER Braithwaite
  4. Old Goriot – Honore de Balzac
  5. A Strange Manuscipt Found in a Copper Cylinder – James De Mille

Transmongolian Reading Challenge

  1. The Unwomanly Face of War – Svetlana Alexievitch
  2. I Am China – Xiaolu Guo
  3. Genghis Khan: The man who conquered the world – Frank McLynn
  4. Red Sorghum – Mo Yan
  5. The Big Green Tent – Ludmila Ulitskaya (a new addition to my challenge list!)

Strong Sense of Place

  1. The Boiling River: Adventure and Discovery in the Amazon – Andrés Ruzo (Peru)
  2. Havana Fever – Leonardo Padura (Cuba)
  3. So Big – Edna Ferber (Chicago, USA)
  4. The Whale and the Cupcake: Stories of Subsistence, Longing, and Community in Alaska – Julia O’Malley (Alaska, USA)
  5. Cinnamon and Gunpowder – Eli Brown (The Sea)

Kindle backlog

  1. Woman on the Edge of Time – Marge Piercy
  2. The Tea Master and the Detective – Aliette de Bodard
  3. Sword – Bogdan Teodorescu
  4. The Magician’s Ward – Patricia C Wrede
  5. Patricia Brent, Spinster – Herbert George Jenkins

There are some properly chunky novels and big nonfiction history books in here, so I suspect I will fail. On the other hand, I do have three weeks off over August, so who knows? (I currently have plans to go on holiday in a slightly different part of Hampshire, and because I haven’t been anywhere other than my own flat since Feb 2020, this feels as exciting as if I were going to the other side of the world). Either way, it’s going to be fun!