What have you been reading this week?
This weekend was meant to be my friend’s hen do but, due to last minute illnesses, it was cancelled. Instead of spending my spare time reading, I’ve done anything but. May is definitely going to be my worst reading month yet. Still better than I was at my worst but not great compared to the last few months.
I don’t often read non-fiction but I do like to buy it. I have a section of my TBR that is dedicated to music-related non-fiction books. This is one of the ones that I’ve had for the longest and also one that I was most excited about. I was already intrigued when I heard Adam and Joe talk about it on the Adam Buxton podcast. I was so easily swayed that I tracked down a copy as soon as possible. Then I put it on a pile and never thought of it again.
It’s been a really long time since I last posted a Friday Favourites list. To be honest, the series was getting tough and I was bored with it. I couldn’t think of interesting ideas and it was taking me too long to write them. So, I decided to scrap it. I was intending to come up with something different to post but it never happened. In light of the recent protests surrounding race discrimination, I decided to bring it back to life once again. I know that I don’t have a particularly big platform or that I have the ability to influence someone’s decisions. However, I have been lucky enough to be born with a privilege that many people don’t have. I have a voice and I need to use it. Last week, I posted a few suggestions for ways people could learn more about the things that the Black Lives Matter movement is marching for. To learn more about the systemic racism that exists in our society. It should not be up to black people to tell us what to do or how to do it. They’ve been doing the work for us for too long. So, I did something. I wanted to know what I had missed and what I needed to know. And, to help people in the same boat, I thought I’d share it. Hopefully, it can give other people some ideas.
I, like so many people in the last few weeks, have added a lot of anti-racist books to my reading list. The majority of them were the sort of books that I should have read a long time ago but I’m really bad at reading non-fiction. Not just political or social non-fiction. There’s something about non-fiction that makes it seem so intense. It’s not the kind of reading that I think really works when you’re struggling to stay away. But, in the wake of yet another death at the hands of an American police officer, I knew that I had to do better. At the same time, I’d joined forces with some people I knew on Instagram to try and start a conversation about racism. We decided that we would all read this book and then talk about it as a group and with our followers. I know, in the grand scheme of things, it’s not a lot but it’s all about making positive steps right now. Ideally, I’d be out showing my support but I can’t. So, I’ll use what small platform that I have to help spread a positive message. To help share other people’s stories. Starting with Reni Eddo-Lodge.
What would you pick as your last meal on Earth? It’s a difficult question. You might think you’d want to treat yourself to the fanciest or most expensive meal you could. However, it’s more than likely that people would pick something nostalgic or comforting. The kind of stodgy meals that take you back to your childhood and make you feel good about the world. Or maybe you’d just go wild and pick the least healthy meal you can think of. After all, it doesn’t really matter anymore, does it? What would I pick? Something carby and cheesy no doubt. Possibly that thing where you melt a wheel of cheese; add bacon, garlic, and whatever else; and then dunk a load of pasta into it. All served with a fresh salad and super garlicky garlic bread. I’d feel like shit afterwards but, as I’ve already said, it doesn’t really matter that much.
I can’t remember exactly when I bought Adam McKay’s first book This is Going to Hurt but I do know that it’s been sat on my TBR pile for a pretty long time. I always meant to read it but, if you’ve paid any attention to my Sunday Rundowns over the last few months/years, then you’ll know I have a book buying problem. At least I’ve become slightly better at reading this year so there’s hope that the pile will decrease but that all hinges on me being not quite so spend happy in 2020. We’ll see how long that lasts for. The fact that his first book has remained unopened meant that I had every intention to ignore Adam McKay’s Christmas themed book. However, on a Christmas Eve shopping trip during my lunch break, I found a copy of it for a fiver and thought I’d get it. If nothing else it would be another quick read to get in before the end of the year and it might encourage me to read its predecessor. So, when I found myself ill and inexplicably awake at 5am on December 26th, I decided to go for it. A couple of hours later, I was still ill, still awake, but I was one more book ahead of my 2019 reading goal. Something that currently stands at 57/50 thanks to my festive flu.
Turns out, the combination of no sleep the night before and feasting on a huge Easter Sunday roast dinner was enough to make me forget about posting my weekly rundown. I just fell straight to sleep last night and it wasn’t until this morning that I realised. I feel a little stupid that after a month of managing to be able to write an additional post every day it’s now that I miss my schedule. Still, better late than never. And what a week it’s been. Finishing off my blog project, finally putting my 30th birthday behind me. And some exciting book news.. Also, I’m unveiling my new graphic for this series. I always find it sad that this gets posted every week without a picture attached so I created one. Unfortunately, on its first week it will read the wrong day but i’m okay with that. Just this once. At least it adds some colour to proceedings.
I have my fair share of graphic novels but they are mostly from the fantastical/ superhero side of things. I’ve read maybe a couple of non-fiction graphic novels in my time but definitely not enough. The last one was at the end of 2016 when I managed to squeeze in The Red Virgin and the Vision of Utopia by Bryan Talbot and Mary Talbot before midnight January 31st. I don’t read enough non-fiction as it is so I should probably embrace the graphic novel format to manage more. I mean all those words replaced with pictures. It makes getting through a story so much easier. I first came across this book when I was killing time in Waterstones waiting for a friend. I spent a lot of money that I hadn’t wanted to and could have spent way more. This was one of the graphic novels being recommended by staff and it sounded like a must read. So I bought it… but somewhere that was selling it for less than Waterstones. I never really know how to read a graphic novel. I feel like it should be in one sitting but that feels like a bit of a mammoth task. So I spent a few days on this and I think it worked better. You definitely could read it in one go but I think I benefited from having a break now and then.