Friday 1 February 2019

Books read in January

The first month of 2019 is behind us already. Incredible, I'm clueless as where time goes these days. Regardless, January was quite a good reading month for me, seven books read and these are they:

1. The Christmas Secret - Anne Perry

2. Friday the Rabbi Slept Late - Harry Kemelman

3. The Beautiful Mystery - Louise Penny

4. Around the World in 80 Days - Michael Palin (To be reviewed)

5. Uprooted - Naomi Novik

6. Fire in the Thatch - E.C.R. Lorac

7. A Talent to Annoy - Nancy Mitford

This is a book of essays by novelist, Nancy Mitford. I have to admit that I've not read any of her novels but I do enjoy a book of essays and articles and this one was not a disappointment. Obviously some were more interesting than others. My favourites were a highly amusing piece on going to see Wagner for the first time, an essay on the English Aristocracy, an article about the Mapp and Lucia books, a really brilliant one on Scott's ill-fated expedition to the Antarctic (beautifully written) and one called 'Blor' which was all about the six Mitford sisters' childhood nanny. There was much more to enjoy, Nancy Mitford had a really cutting sense of humour and knew how to use it on paper, I laughed quite lot... but I also learnt an awful lot. She says at the end of the Scott piece, talking about various books on the subject, 'I would like to think that I may have induced somebody to read them again'. Well, I hope she would be happy to know that her excellent essay has made me want to do just that and I've reserved one of her recs from the library.

I'm quite pleased with my reading month. Seven excellent books, two non-fictions, some really superb crime writing, I mean really superb. Too difficult to choose a favourite as The Beautiful Mystery, Friday the Rabbi Slept Late and Fire in the Thatch were all so good.

I would recommend these three books to any lover of crime fiction, although The Beautiful Mystery would not be a good place to start the Armande Gamache series.

In my post at the beginning of January I did a little collage of six books I was hoping to read that month. I'm delighted to report that I actually read five of those six books. Clearly, doing that worked quite nicely for me. So nicely, I think I'll do it again. Here're a few I hope to get to, but there are others, so I won't be stressing on what gets read and what doesn't. I shall go with the flow...

I'm likely to start with The Bedlam Stacks but only because its a library book due back on the 11th. Feb. and someone else wants it so I can't renew. The cheek of it...

Happy reading and this is what my town in Devon, UK, looks like this morning, the 1st. of February:



DesLily said...

You are out of control LOL ! If I could read all day and into the evening I could never read as much as you!! (My sis the speed reader!) You are incredible!! I am most glad that you enjoy so many of them that you read <3

Nan said...

Your snow looks so pretty. Much like here. Of course yours will melt and be gone before you know it, and there will be flowers. Not like here. ;<)) I so pleased you tried, and liked, the Rabbi Small book. Wouldn't Kemelman be happy. I haven't read Lorac yet. And I love it that you will be reading one of NM's recommended books!

Kay said...

Nice picture of your part of the world, Cath. Looks suitably winter-like. Hope you get to read the Susan Hill book. I'm just about to finish her newest one in that series. I've liked it a lot.

Nan said...

I've just bought Murder by Matchlight by Lorac on the Kindle.

Cath said...

Pat: LOL... lots of folks read heaps more than me, Peter for instance is *so* much quicker. My whole family is quicker than me. Never mind... it's not a race.

Nan: You are so right and in fact our snow is now almost gone, a few patches in the garden, but a lot more left on the hills, which is nice to see.

I have Saturday the Rabbi Went Hungry on my Nook ready to read soon. Very soon... maybe next. I like it when a book like Nancy Mitford's book of essays leads me on to read something else that I hadn't expected to want to read. I have Murder By Matchlight on my Kindle too. I thought it sounded excellent.

Kay: Yes it's very wintery at the moment, the snow is fast going but it's still really chilly. One of those crisp clear days.

Yes, the Susan Hill book will be read this month for sure.

TracyK said...

Nice list of books, Cath. I haven't visited much this month so I went and checked out the posts I had not ready yet. I am glad you liked the E.C.R. Lorac book ... I want to read some of that author's books. My husband read Murder by Matchlight so I have a copy of that one.

I look forward to your post on the Michael Palin book, I have borrowed that from my son but have not started reading it yet.

Margaret @ BooksPlease said...

You had a good month! and I agree about Fire in the Thatch - I haven't read any of your other books so can't really comment other than to say they do sound good. Your collage of books of books to read next makes me wonder if that would help me get to reading from my TBRs too, although at this time of year apart from library books all my books are TBRs! I also have a copy of The Bedlam Stacks, but on Kindle, so I feel I can read it whenever I want - inevitably that is usually later rather than sooner. I hope we both enjoy it. I'll look out for your review. :)

We did have some snow too - not as much as down south - and it went very quickly.

Cath said...

Tracy: Thanks, I like a bit of variety each month. I'm really looking forward to Murder by Matchlight.

The Michael Palin was very good, I now have his book on Eastern Europe to read from the library.

Margaret: I was quite taken aback that Fire in the Thatch was so good, one of those where I was shocked at how fast I was reading.

I started The Bedlam Stacks but couldn't get into it. I returned it to the library but might buy it for my Kindle as I suspect my mood wasn't right and another time I might really like it. That happened to me with The Essex Serpent.

Our snow has all gone... and my friend who lives up there says yours has too. I wonder if that's it for the winter now?

Yvonne @ Fiction Books Reviews said...

E.C.R. Lorac sounds like an author I need to have read at least once, although make that twice, as I like the sound of both the books you have featured.

Apart from that, 'Friday The Rabbi Slept Late' is a must for me to read, but every time I see Louise Penny books featured, I am reminded that I just can't get to catch up with the Armand Gamache series, which really frustrates me as it sounds so good!

In fact, just about all the mystery / thrillers featured in your post would do for me, with maybe a couple of historical fiction stories added just for variation. Those little extras probably wouldn't include 'Bedlam Stacks' for me either - not my cup of tea at all :)

I hope that whichever book you choose next is more to your liking. With me having too much choice is probably the worst thing, it takes me ages to make a decision :)

Yvonne xx

Cath said...

Yvonne: E.C.R. Lorac is indeed a good author, the BLCC books vary a bit but this is one of the best I've read.

It's so difficult, when your reading time is limited, to read *everything*. I'm trying to learn that I just can't but it's hard when you love books as much as we do.

I gave up on Bedlam Stacks as I wasn't enjoying it, I may go back to it as some stage but I'm not short of other books that I might enjoy more.

You hit the nail on the head... I too have a huge choice of 'next books' and loads on my Kindle that I want to get to. And I seem to be getting worse and worse at deciding, 'which one next?'

Hope you're having a good weekend and thanks for dropping by.

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