Yes, I’m on a writing hiatus, but I couldn’t just let my March reads disappear off the blogging radar completely.
One of the reasons I have this blog is keep track of what I’ve read. Many of my books have not been purchased by me – they are reading copies from work. Therefore, they are not staying with me, to reread one day, or to dip into again. If I don’t make a note of them, they have a tendency to get mixed up together in my memory.
In particular, I now like to document which edition of the book I’ve read, plus it’s opening line. As the month has gone on, and I’ve visited other blogs, I have found myself making quick one-line assessments of some of my March reads. I’ve brought these together for some mini March reviews.
For Cathy’s Reading Ireland Month I dove into another Niall Williams book.
I can now officially declare that Niall Williams is my favourite Irish writer. Four Letters of Love was his first book and it is utterly delightful. Once again I fell in love with Williams’ heady mix of lyrical prose and wonderful characters along with his gentle spritz of magic realism. FLOL also has one of the best opening lines I’ve read in quite some time.
When I was twelve years old God spoke to my father for the first time.
Title: Four Letters of Love Author: Niall Williams ISBN: 9781447275107 Imprint: Picador Published: 1st January 2015 (first published 1997) Format: paperback Pages: 352
On the Black Hill by Bruce Chatwin was the perfect choice for this year’s Dewithon with Paula. Nostalgic with lots of vivid local scenes and, oh, those twins! Lewis and Benjamin are memorable characters that will live me for a long time. The ending fell off a bit, but it was a wonderful Welsh excursion through the life and times of these two endearing men nonetheless.
For forty-two years, Lewis and Benjamin Jones slept side by side, in their parents’ bed, at their farm which was known as ‘The Vision’.
Title: On the Black Hill Author: Bruce Chatwin ISBN: 9780099769712 Imprint: Vintage Published: 1998 (originally published in 1982) Format: Paperback Pages: 262
The Daughter of Time came to me thanks to a recommendation by a fellow book blogger. For the life of me I cannot find the relevant comment thread on the relevant post, to know who to thank. Whoever you are – thank you!
Jospehine Tey’s easy to read investigation into the role that King Richard III had in the murder (or not) of his two young nephews was rivetting stuff. And dare I say, fun. Whatever you make of her findings (via her detective Alan Grant) her musings on how history can be falsified and how popular opinion, stories and rumour can become ‘fact’ is very pertinent in our current climate.
Thanks to this book, I have now pulled out of my TBR pile Digging for Richard III: The Search for the Lost King by Mike Pitts (what a great name for an archeologist!)
Grant lay on his high white cot and stared at the ceiling. Stared at it with loathing. He knew by heart every last minute crack on its nice clean surface.
Title: The Daughter of Time (Inspector Alan Grant #5) Author: Josephine Tey ISBN: 9780099536826 Imprint: Arrow Published August 6th 2009 by Arrow (originally published 1951) Format: Paperback Pages: 224
Goodnight, Vivienne, Goodnight by Steven Carroll is the fourth book in his T. S. Eliot series. Vivienne’s story, as imagined by Carroll is fascinating, but what really drew me into this story was Detective-Sergeant Stephen Minter, the policeman assigned to hunt down Vivienne after her escape from the lunatic asylum. I could have read a whole book just about him.
My favourite of the four books was the first story, The Lost Love, although A New England Affair has stayed with me too. Obviously, it was Emily Hale’s side of the story that captured my imagination the most.
The September sun was wasted on them as they walked about the deck, Tom and Vivienne. Southampton, 1932. A date etched into her diary.
Title: Goodnight, Vivienne, Goodnight Author: Steven Carroll ISBN: 9781460751114 Imprint: Fourth Estate Published: 2nd March 2022 Format: Paperback Pages: 256
- The Mauritius Command | Patrick O’Brian
- The Hare and the Tortoise | Elizabeth Jenkins
- French Braid | Anne Tyler
- This post was written on the traditional land of the Wangal clan, one of the 29 clans of the Eora Nation within the Sydney basin. This Reading Life acknowledges that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are this land’s first storytellers.