What have you been reading this week?
Work still feels stressful this week but things are finally starting to look up. I’m back to working 4/5 days a week which gives me more time to get things done. As much as I’ve enjoyed having my afternoons to sort out my life, it’s not been easy and I wouldn’t want to keep it up for long. With lockdown coming to an end, it’s weird to think that I could be back in the office soon. Back to a normal work schedule. Of course, it’s been such a long time since life was actually normal and it won’t really be normal yet. Who even knows if anything will be properly normal again anyway? But lets not get too deep this soon. On the plus side, the elevating of stress has given me more energy to read, which mean I’m in a better position than last week. Hopefully, I can bring March back from reading despair.
Who is the best author to go to when you’re falling behind in your monthly reading challenge? Agatha Christie is definitely one of the best writers for getting me back on track. I always enjoy her books and they’re usually really quick reads. Meaning I can cross off a couple of letters in a matter of days and stop stressing about it so much. So, I picked up a quick standalone novel. I realise that in my re-readings, I tend to focus more on the Poirot or Miss Marple novels. Well, apart from And Then There Were None which I never stop banging on about. But this is definitely one of her best. There’s a reason why it was included on my suggestions for where to start reading Christie books.
I try not to pay too much attention to literary prizes. It’s mostly because I like to decide what I read based on my own parameters. I don’t agree with lists that offer you a list of books that everyone should read. Who is to say which books everyone should read? Wo has the same taste as everyone else? It all goes back to the canon and who decided which books were deemed appropriate. I won’t go into it all again but I’m not the kind of person who automatically picks up an author because they’ve won a prize. However, I was super excited to get my hands on Kazuo Ishiguro’s first novel since winning the Nobel Prize in Literature. There was an awful lot of pressure on him to create something great and it did concern me that he was writing about AI. After all, we’ve seen literary fiction writers crash and burn when they attempted science fiction. Although, at least Ishiguro has previous.
What have you been reading this week?
I’ve had a genuinely terrible reading week. I started Klara and the Sun last Thursday and I only finished it yesterday. I’ve not been sleeping well and have been falling asleep after a few pages. I just don’t have the concentration at the moment. Which is worrying. Not least because I have only read 2 books so far this month and neither of them were letters towards my Spell the Month challenge. I’ve should still have enough time to complete the challenge but I will have to start getting quicker. Going from 10 books a month to 2 in 2 weeks is a huge dip. I just don’t know what’s wrong with me. Work’s been super stressful lately, so I’m going to blame that.
This Monday was International Women’s Day. A day that is dedicated to celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. It is a day to highlight and challenge the disparity between the genders. A time to call for equality. As people in the book community, it is also a time to celebrate and champion female writers. As such, those of you on Instagram will no doubt have noticed plenty of amazing female centric content cropping up in your feed. There was one post that really caught my eye and prompted me to write this post. The caption started with the age-old question:
Do you preferentially read books by women or men?
I, obviously, responded in my normal pretentious and, probably, obnoxious way, which I won’t go into yet because it would negate the need to write this post. Instead, I want to focus on most replies. They consisted of a sentiment that went along the lines of “I don’t care about the gender of the writer. It’s all about the story.” There’s nothing wrong with this idea in theory but it’s an attitude that I do think we need to change. And I’ll tell you why.
I never read Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events when I was younger. I remember seeing it in bookshops all the time but I never picked it up. Even when the film adaptation came out, I wasn’t really bothered by it. It wasn’t until I watched the Netflix series that I was interested in reading the books. The show was so well made and so much fun. So, I started thinking about reading the series. Of course, as my TBR is currently huge, I didn’t actually do anything about it. Not until I needed to cross off a couple of letters on my February Spell the Month Challenge. I knew that I’d be able to get the first 2 books finished in time and get the letter B and an R sorted before the month ended. It seems to make sense that I review these together, so consider this the first in Motherbooker’s A Series of Unfortified Reviews. Disclaimer, you’ll probably forget them in no time.
What have you been reading this week?
What a mad week. Work is getting more and more stressful as the days go by. That’s mainly because we’re being asked to do more despite the fact that we’re working fewer days. We’ll get there. On the other hand, I’ve had a pretty fun week. It was my birthday on Friday and we made the best of it considering the circumstances. I also got a few book related things to get excited about. Have I done enough reading? Not at all. Who can read with so much going on? I do need to get better this week. I have stuff for my next 2 reviews but I will need to catch up before next week. Today is going to have to be book focused.
In order to complete my Spell the Month Challenge for February, I knew that I’d have to find a book title that started with Y. After reading Yes Please last month, I wasn’t sure that I’d have anything already on my shelves. So. I ended up buying something to fit the bill. Unfortunately there aren’t an awful lot of inspiring books beginning with Y. Or at least not that I was able to get in time. I’ve for a bit of time before I’ll need my next one, so I’ll have to do some proper research. For this month, my Y pick was I book I randomly found on Amazon. It sounded interesting enough and, most importantly, was quick. Meaning that, even if it ended up being terrible, I wouldn’t have to push on through a really long novel.
I honestly thought I’d fall apart on spelling the month out in my books for February. We needed one more letter and the month was shorter. It seemed like a recipe for disaster. It was a bit of a struggle to find something for Y and I had to break my book buying ban. Then there was the fact that I had to find last minute alternatives for R and B because I wasn’t going to finish the two I’d set aside. I found E a bit more of a struggle than I expected but, once again, Agatha Christie came through for me.
After having a slight reading slump this month, I wasn’t sure that I’d manage to make it through a lot of books. I had set myself a TBR list but, inevitably, had to change that around to finish my monthly challenge. The plan is to finish what I didn’t read in February in March. At least there’s only 5 letters to cross off.
Number of books read: 10
Number of rereads: 0
Number of physical books: 6
Number of ebooks: 0
Number of audiobooks: 4