Where is this year going? I can't believe we are half-way through already.
In June I read fourteen books (including one play), six short stories, as well as reaching the midway point in another book and reading sixty five pages of Ulysses. That brings me to a total of sixty six books for the midyear, an average of eleven a month. As we are half-way through the year, I thought I would document my favourite books of the year so far, contenders for my favourite book of the year. I have narrowed it down to six books, since we have completed six months of the year.
Lady Rose and Mrs Memmary by Ruby Ferguson
Love Falls by Esther Freud (reviewed here)
Mort by Terry Pratchett (reviewed here)
The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett (reviewed here)
If I Stay by Gayle Forman (reviewed here)
The Lost Art of Keeping Secrets by Eva Rice (reviewed here)
I have read a number of books that I adored and The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery, The Enchanted April, and Nation by Terry Pratchett narrowly missed my favourites shortlist. If the ending of Burnt Shadows by Kamila Shamsie hadn't been so contrived and disappointing then that would have featured and it is very likely that the book that I am savouring slowly at the moment, The Wilderness by Samantha Harvey (photographed above), will result in being one of my favourite books of the year.
Now that we have reached the first day of July and summer is suddenly upon us, I think it is about time that I lay out my summer reading plans.
Obviously the mountain of library books that I have (the link is only some of them) will feature as well as recent acquisitions and a few others on my immediate TBR pile. Below is the longlist (called a longlist because realistically I don't think I will manage to read every one of the twenty five titles on it over the coming months) and I will be reading these in a hot and humid London and two weeks home in Glasgow during August, during which I will be reading the Kelman book for definite (set in Glasgow).
People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks
Bog Child by Siobhan Dowd
The Unicorn by Iris Murdoch
The Parasites by Daphne Du Maurier
The Bone People by Keri Hulme
Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Stroud
Kieron Smith, Boy by James Kelman
Journal by Katherine Mansfield
Saplings by Noel Streatfeild
Crow Lake by Mary Lawson
Summer at Gaglow by Esther Freud
The Day of the Triffids by John Wyndham
Therese Raquin by Emile Zola
Of Human Bondage by William Somerset Maugham
Hideous Kinky by Esther Freud
Lady Oracle by Margaret Atwood
The Skin Chairs by Barbara Comyns
Beachcombing by Maggie Dana
Overly-ambitious, yes, but very exciting! Happy Summer, everyone! I'm off to hibernate with my books and will see you in winter...