I’m currently still reading the final book in Stephen King’s Bill Hodges trilogy, End of Watch, and I’m hating every moment of it. I can’t wait to finish it and, I have to be honest, I’ve looked ahead to find out how it ends. It’s not great but I’ve spent so much time on it that I feel like I have to finish. This always happens to me, I start a book and try so hard to finish it that I just keep going despite knowing it won’t be any good. Obviously, as I’m struggling to read it not only makes it harder to finish but it’s also highlighting how many other things I could be reading. As you know from my weekly rundowns, I have a problem with buying too many books so I have plenty to be getting on with. They all sit looking at me as I struggle to give a shit about Brady’s fucking psychic powers and Bill’s cancer. So I’ve compiled a list of the books I’d rather be reading than this shit.
Ten: Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
It’s not been that long since I last read Neverwhere but finding the amazing illustrated edition recently has awoken all of those familiar Gaiman feelings. As I sit and write this list I can see it on my bookshelf. It calls to me and begs to be picked up. I wouldn’t say that it’s my favourite Gaiman book but I can’t help but fall into the world he helped to create.
Nine: Jurassic Park by Michael Chrichton
Just like Jaws, Jurassic Park is one of my most-loved films but I’ve never thought about reading the original novel. I just never really felt the need when Spielberg’s adaptation was so good. Plus, the idea of a version of Jurassic Park without Jeff Goldblum and Richard Attenborough just seems wrong. Still, it was so interesting getting through Jaws that I decided it was time to give it a go. I’m not saying it will replace the film in my heart but it’s always fun to see where things come from.
Eight: Purity by Johnathan Franzen
This is another book that I’ve been wanting to read for a while but I’ve been put off by massive hardbacks. Also, I’ve heard some bad things amongst all of the praise it’s been getting. I’m not exactly familiar with Franzen but this certainly sounds interesting. I reckon it’ll be tough read, which is why it’s so high on this list. Still, I like the idea of the mystery surrounding Pip’s father and the Julian Assange sounding Andreas Wolf.
Seven: Sexus by Henry Miller
A book that I’ve wanted to read ever since I found such a gorgeous copy on Amazon. You’ll have seen it on my Instagram if you follow me because I was obsessed. This is the first in The Rosy Crucifixion trilogy featuring a fictionalised account of his life. It’s goes into discussions about sex, love and happiness. It was also banned in the United States. Who doesn’t want to read a banned book every now and then.
Six: A Dance of Dragons by George R.R. Martin
Season 6 of Game of Thrones was fucking amazing. Now that the show has overtaken the books then it’s been great to sit down and watch things I don’t know anything about. It’s also got me excited about The Winds of Winter, which, fingers crossed, will be released early-ish next year. However, reading A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms has shown me that I’ve forgotten how to read Martin’s prose. I need to re-familiarise myself with his style and try and remember what the fuck happened at the end of book 5 before I’m supposed to jump into the next part.
Five: Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky
I spent absolutely ages going through the bookshops in my town trying to find a copy of this book but to no avail. I guess nobody in Ilkley really gives a shit about which book won the Arthur C Clarke award. So I did something I don’t like doing and bought it on Amazon. It should be arriving in the next few days and the wait has made me super fucking desperate to read it. The only reason it’s so high up is simply because I don’t actually have it yet.
Four: Battle Royale by Koushun Takami
Another story that I’m familiar with but have never read the source material of. There’s a pattern emerging in this list. I love the film Battle Royale and am really interested to see how the issues it explores are dealt with in novel form. I’m expecting more than The Hunger Games but I don’t know if it’ll live up the violent brilliance of the film. Still, it’ll be better than the shit I’m currently reading.
Three: Valley of the Dolls by Jacqueline Susann
If you follow me on Instagram then you’ll probably have seen my copy of this novel. I love it. It’s all black, gold and neon pink. Beautiful and simple. Utter perfection. This is a story I’m familiar with but I have never actually read the novel. It tells the story of Hollywood starlets getting caught up in a cycle of drugs and alcohol to cope with the stresses of the entertainment industry. Despite being 50 years old this remains a relevant book and I think it’s about time I read it. Certainly, the cover is urging me to open the pages every time I glimpse it.
Two: His Bloody Project by Roderick Macrae
This was one part of my latest book haul and I’m beyond excited to read it. One of the longlist for the Man Booker Prize 2016, it tells the story of a multiple murderer in 1869. It explores the mind and motivations of a guilty man as everyone tries to understand why he killed so many horrible crimes. I’m not normally a fan of crime thrillers but this one sounds different. Plus, the nomination speaks positively for it. Still, they did also nominate the hardly spectacular Us by David Nicholls in 2014.
To be honest, at this stage I don’t even fucking care. I’d read anything if it meant I was done with this awful book. I thought the point was for Stephen King to play with the crime genre so why have we just fallen into another forgettable novel where King plays with the paranormal? It makes no sense and I absolutely hate how it upsets the flow of these novels. Unless there’s some big thing I’m missing I just can’t wait to finish this book. Although, from the look of reviews, I’m the only one that thinks so.