Bout of Books May 2015

My “regular Friday posts” thing never did work out. That’s okay. It was an ambition, not a hard-and-fast rule. In fact, I suspect that blog posts are going to become more sporadic for a while, rather than less. The PhD is turning into a time-sucking social-life-devouring monster, and, as much as I love to read, the few hours I currently have which aren’t devoted to my research or my “real” job are spent on top priority activities, like sleeping and eating and trying to keep my flat inhabitable.

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Austen in August & Pride and Prejudice reread

My relationship with Jane Austen is, I think, a bit complicated. I read all of her works in my early teens, and mostly didn’t like them very much. I think I was too young for them, and moved onto Wuthering Heights, which (rather worryingly, when considered as a commentary on my teenage mental health) I thought was much more realistic and enjoyable. Continue reading

Underhyped reads

Although I enjoyed my experience of the Dewey 24-hour readathon back in April, I’m still fairly new to the concept of readathons. However, the idea of reading as a group activity, of a whole load of people from many different countries collectively reading and engaging with and enthusing about books–that seems to me to be exactly what the internet should be for. With that in mind, I am participating in the Underhyped Books readathon this week. There’s a Goodreads group that has been set up with all the relevant information (https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/137329-the-under-hyped-readathon); for my purposes, all that’s really important is that the books selected have under 5000 ratings on Goodreads. This is something new for me, since I read so many classics (all of which have tens of thousands of GR ratings), so I’m being forced out of my literary comfort zone. It’s an interesting experience, and here’s an approximate TBR:

Falling Sideways by Tom Holt (910 ratings)
Everland by Rebecca Hunt (44 ratings)
The Adventure of the Christmas Pudding by Agatha Christie (3294 ratings)
The Red Queen by Margaret Drabble (1380 ratings)

I’m currently 160 pages into Falling Sideways, and, truth be told, I’m hoping it gets better soon. At the moment, it strikes me as snide without being funny, and that’s a quality that always irritates me in any writing. However, I read and loved The Portable Door and various other Tom Holt comic fantasy novels, so maybe this one will pick up–I’m not even halfway through at the moment. I’ve also just finished working night shifts, so maybe I’m just in a grumpy mood. I’ll have a nap and a cup of coffee, and see if it improves accordingly 🙂

Thanks to Ramblings of an Elfpire for setting up this readathon! I’m having a lot of fun chatting with people in the Goodreads group and getting book recommendations, even if what I’m reading at the moment isn’t as satisfying as it could be. I’ll post another couple of updates throughout the week and a wrap-up at the end. Let me know what underhyped books you love–I’m always on the lookout for recommendations!