Random thoughts

If you would prefer a searchable / sortable linear index for this category click here

My Life in Books (2020 Edition)

I’m taking one more look over my shoulder at the end of this strangest of years with a meme that lots of blogger friends posted around mid-December. Like Annabel over at Annabookbel, I’m sticking to books I’ve read in 2020, most with links to reviews on this blog and I’ve also nicked her Covid question. …

My Life in Books (2020 Edition) Read More »

Cover image for V for Victory by Lissa Evans

Books of the Year 2020: Part Four

The last quarter of the year brought both increasing hopes of a vaccine to liberate us all from Covid’s grip plus the somewhat nervous excitement of an American presidential election together with six more bookish delights for me. September proved to be my best reading month with three treats all from authors whose previous novels …

Books of the Year 2020: Part Four Read More »

Cover image for The Blind Light by Stuart Evers

Books of the Year 2020: Part Three

Summer saw a return to more serious reading after spring’s escapism, perhaps because we were experiencing a little respite from the pandemic in the UK. Coincidentally, both June choices overlapped in terms of their unusual theme, exploring the repercussions of nuclear fission. The first was Stuart Evers’ The Blind Light, a little daunting in its …

Books of the Year 2020: Part Three Read More »

Cover image

Books of the Year 2020: Part One

Strange to remember writing my books of the year posts for 2019 last December, blissfully unaware of the surreal year that lay ahead for us all. I’ve been one of those fortunate people whose concentration didn’t take too much of a pandemic hit instead burying myself in reading and blogging, finding solace in books and …

Books of the Year 2020: Part One Read More »

Cover image for Olive Again by Elizabeth Strout

Paperbacks to Look Out for in November 2020

Slim pickings for November’s paperbacks with just five that stand out for me, two of which I’ve already read. I’ll begin with one of my favourite books from last year which saw the return of the irascible yet essentially warm-hearted Olive Kitteridge, familiar to fans of Elizabeth Strout’s eponymous Pulitzer Prize-winning book published in 2008. …

Paperbacks to Look Out for in November 2020 Read More »

Cover image for A Stranger City by Linda Grant

Paperbacks to Look Out for in August 2020: Part Two

I’m beginning this second instalment of August paperbacks with one I’ve already read. Linda Grant’s A Stranger City looks at how we’re all both connected and unconnected, portraying a post-referendum London through a set of disparate characters brought together by their links with a woman whose body has been pulled from the Thames. Each character’s …

Paperbacks to Look Out for in August 2020: Part Two Read More »

My 2020 Booker Wish List

Another year, another Booker Prize longlist in the offing although this year has been far from normal both in the book world and beyond with titles bouncing around the publishing schedules like tennis balls thanks to the pandemic. I’d half expected a postponement of the longlist announcement but the Booker brigade seem to be sticking …

My 2020 Booker Wish List Read More »