I’ve not been feeling well today, unfortunately. However I was planning on blogging briefly each day about what I’m reading, how much I’m reading, and how I’m feeling about these books, throughout August. You know, on top of actual reviews and other blog posts. Who knows if I’ll keep up with it… but so far:
I’ve started the month by beginning to read Alice Oseman’s debut Solitaire which came out yesterday. I had pre-ordered it, it turned up yesterday, but I wanted to finish Fangirl before I opened this one up. (Who am I kidding? I’m kind of in the middle of a few books, but oh well.) I finished Fangirl, of course. I couldn’t put it down once I really got into it. There’ll be a review coming as soon as I feel well enough to collect my thoughts on it.
As far is Solitaire goes, I’ve only read the first five chapters or so. I like it so far. That’s all I can really say. I’m enjoying the voice but hoping it becomes a little more complex than the stereotypical cynical, sarcastic teenager. I’ve read a few of those (hell, I’ve lived one) and I’d like to see something a little more for once. The plot seems to be moving towards something interesting though, so that might force the main character into some situation that will make her change her attitude a bit. Or at least react in an interesting way that will justify the cynicism. Fingers crossed! I have high hopes for this one.
I’m going to be doing the #bookadayuk challenge this month on Twitter. It’s being run by the Siobhan Dowd Trust this month.
The prompt for today was ‘the most arresting opening line’ and I chose Elizabeth Wurtzel’s Prozac Nation. “I start to get the feeling that something is really wrong.”
I had a flick through a bunch of novels on my bookshelves (because I’m terrible at remembering this kind of thing) and this one stood out the most to me. Mostly because of what it gives away, while also giving away nothing. It’s present tense, so it’s unfurling right now, it’s first person narrative, so it really makes the reader feel like it’s happening to them too, and the choice of language is impeccable. The language is not pretentious or fancy. It’s not trying too hard. It’s exactly how you or I would try to get across the sense that something isn’t right. That unassuming yet infinitely powerful word: really. It gives everything away. It tells you the narrator means it. But who is the narrator? And what is wrong? Well, you’ll have to keep reading to find out.
It’s most striking when you realise that this opening line isn’t fiction, it’s autobiographical. It makes it stick that much more.
I have a feeling this tbr list is going to change pretty quickly, but here are some of the books I’m going to try and get read this month:
Solitaire by Alice Oseman
Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
How To Build A Girl by Caitlin Moran
A Song for Issy Bradley by Carys Bray
Smiler’s Fair by Rebecca Levene
The Blazing World by Siri Hustvedt
The Dog by Joseph O’Neill
The Long Mars by Terry Pratchett & Stephen Baxter
We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler
The Maze Runner by James Dashner
Veronica Mars: The Thousand Dollar Tan Line by Rob Thomas and Jennifer Graham
The Shock of the Fall by Nathan Filer
N-W by Zadie Smith
Dear Lucy by Julie Sarkissian
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon.
I have a load more on my list, and can imagine I’ll discover more that will worm their way in there. But that’s a start, right? Not to mention that this month I’ll be working at Reading from the 21st to the 25th. Then I have to get ready for my week of work experience at John Murray Press, which is part of Hodder & Stoughton, which is of course part of the Hachette UK group, starting September 1st! Hopefully the first of many.
Right, well I’m off to bed to watch the latest episode of Suits and then attempt to sleep off whatever is making me feel so ill. I’ll post again tomorrow with what will hopefully be more reading progress, as well as the next #bookadayuk prompt – best pairing of words and pictures.
If you’d like to read some grumpy tweets about things like a) my headache, b) my family, c) my unemployment (and how much I hate it), and d) my eating habits… you can follow me on Twitter.