Books · WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesdays: 16 January 2019

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WWW Wednesdays is a meme hosted by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words.

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you will read next?

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Arden, Katherine - Winternight Trilogy 3 The Winter of the WitchWhat am I currently reading?

I am currently reading The Winter of the Witch by Katherine Arden. This is the third and final book in the Winternight trilogy, which started with The Bear and the Nightingale. I planned to read The Snow Child, but I pre-ordered this one (shock! horror!) and since it has the word Winter in it, it suits my Winter Reading Project and I decided to read this one instead, or first anyway. I read a lot last week, so I am reading far less so far this week, but that’s fine. I am really enjoying this story. I am about halfway and I feel like Arden’s writing has really grown throughout this series and I love the weird and wonderful world she creates.

What did I recently finish reading?

Since the last WWW I have finished The Wrath and the Dawn (Renée Ahdieh), which was entertaining enough, but did not blow me away. I also finished Winter: an Anthology for the Changing Seasons, which I really loved. I read a poetry collection: Wild Flowers, by Michelle S Smith, which I thought was really excellent. And finally I read a children’s book by Matt Haig with my daughter: The Truth Pixie, which is poetry as well really. I enjoyed reading poetry and I definitely want to read more in 2019.

What do I think I will be reading next?

The Snow Child (Eowyn Ivey) is STILL top of my list this month. I would like to read something small and very different inbetween my current read and that one, but we’ll see. I also have a non-fiction book I would like to get to that I received via NetGalley, which is Carolina of Orange-Nassau by Moniek Bloks, which is interesting to me as I am Dutch and Orange-Nassau is our royal house. The publication date is at the end of this month.

Books · Reviews

Book Thoughts: Longbourn (Jo Baker)

baker, jo - longbourn

★★★★★★☆

Title: Longbourn
Author: Jo Baker
Genre: Historical Fiction    Pages: 443
First published: 2013
Edition: Paperback, published by Transworld Books in 2014

It is wash-day for the housemaids at Longbourn House, and Sarah’s hands are chapped and raw. Domestic life below stairs, ruled with a tender heart and an iron will by Mrs Hill the housekeeper, is about to be disturbed by the arrival of a new footman, bearing secrets and the scent of the sea.

When I started this novel based on Pride and Prejudice I realised I had read it before, probably around the time it came out. Since I did not remember much about it I was happy to read it again. I worried it would not be very good since I had completely forgotten I had already read it!

I was pleasantly surprised. The story, centered around the Bennets’ servants, is very well told. I loved all the details about their chores and their daily lives compared to the Bennets. Our main character Sarah is a sweet hard-working girl, and it is easy to like her.

The ‘cast’ from Pride and Prejudice appear here and there and you recognise the events, but it never feels like it leans too heavily on the classic we all know and love. In fact I thought it was quite interesting to see those characters ‘behind-the-scenes;, as it were. All in all, it does manage to very much feels like its own book. It would have worked even if it had not used Jane Austen’s novel as its skeleton.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book and it is a thoughtfully written historical novel in which you learn a lot more about the time period in which the Austen novels are set and written, and not just the pretty things.

A bit of a gem in my opinion.

6 out of 7 stars

Book Haul · Books

October Charity Shop Book Haul

After the huge book haul from last month I have been keeping quiet on the book buying front. Go me! I did pop into the charity shop over the weekend to look for riding boots for my daughter (which they did not have!), so I could not not go to the book section.

I spent a grand total of €3.75 on the following books:

1. The Girl with the Pearl Earring (Tracy Chevalier)

I do like a bit of historical fiction and this book is set in my country, so why not read it? I don’t actually mind the movie cover on this one.

2. The Long Way Down (Nick Hornby)

This actually has a pretty low rating on Goodreads (3.41), but it sounds kind of fun.

3. A Little Learning (Evelyn Waugh)

I never read any Evelyn Waugh, but this is an autobiography as far as I can tell and I will probably like it.

4. Lord Arthur Savile’s Crime and Other STories (Oscar Wilde)

I love The PIcture of Dorian Gray so much, I have always resisted reading anymore Wilde, bu tit might be about time! I have a book of Wilde’s collected work, but this paperback will be much easier to read.

5. Don’t Look Now (Daphne Du Maurier)

A collection of five short stories – perfect!

6. Quartet in Autumn (Barbara Pym)

7. The Sweet Dove Died (Barbara Pym)

8. Eccellent Women (Barbara Pym)

9. Jane and Prudence (Barbara Pym

The cover of Quarter in Autumn caught my eye with it’s pretty pattern and autumn colours. Then I found three more from the same writer with the same kind of covers. The stories seem to be about friendships and relationships and sound like good reads – I decided I needed them all!

So, that was my small haul from October so far. I don’t think there will be many more! Let me know if you read any of these books or authors!

 

Books · Currently Reading

Currently Reading… Update #26

The first week of March has been particularly slow in regards to getting books read.  I don’t mind though, as it was a busy time with lots of stuff to do and people to see. Things are settling down now and I want to be reading!

Marr, Johnny - Set The Boy Free

I am still listening to Johnny Marr’s autobiography Set The Boy Free. I am just over halfway now. I listen in chunks when I can, but I have been listening to music a lot as well, so it’s a toss up sometimes to hear someone talk about music or actually listen to the stuff. The latter has been winning out quite a bit, despite the fact I am enjoying the listen.

 

I am reading two books at the moment. One physical, one on my Kindle.

Cooper, Simon - The Otter's TaleI am about 30 physical pages into The Otters’ Tale by Simon Cooper, which I thought was a non-fiction book, but it’s not quite. After looking it up, this is the imagined life of an actual otter the author came to know. That’s fine, I like books written from an animal’s point of view. Unfortunately, whilst looking up the book at Goodreads, I read a massive spoiler in one of the reviews – not happy about that, though I do not think it will influence my enjoyment of reading the book. I just do not understand why people like to mention major plot points in their reviews. Hmmph!

 

Willson, David A - Looking For Dei

The final book I am reading is Looking For Dei by David A Willson, which I got as an e-Arc via NetGalley. I am about 30% in and it’s ok. It’s enjoyable enough and the pacing seems good. It is a good book to get out of a slow week with.

 

Hopefully, after just finishing one book in 9 days, my pace should pick up! I have a couple of buddy reads coming up, so I would like to have these books finished in the coming week if I can.