Recent reads

As usual, I’ve been reading an eclectic mix of books. I like to mix up my reading material, moving from a middle-grade fantasy book to a contemporary adult novel to a non-fiction book.  Here’s what I’ve been reading over the last few weeks –

  • The year of magical thinking by Joan Didion – I’ve been meaning to read this for a while and finally borrowed it from the library. It’s a non-fiction account of the year after the unexpected death of Didion’s husband. Didion describes herself as a ‘cool customer’ so this is no sentimental story but a clear-eyed perspective of how life moves on after death. I found myself holding back tears – it’s a beautiful lovesong to their marriage.

  • Because of Winn Dixie by Kate DiCamillo – I reread this favourite middle-grade novel about Opal and her smiling dog because I just love DiCamillo’s writing. She blends humour and quirkiness with heartfelt observations and moments – something worth savouring again and again. Mr 9 is reading it with me now.

  • Boy swallows universe by Trent Dalton – amazing debut novel. A friend lent this to me, and I’m so glad she did because it will definitely be in my top ten books for the year. It’s the story of Eli Bell and his older, mute brother August. After their junkie mother and heroin dealer stepfather are caught up in a drug scandal, the boys are sent to live with their father, whom they haven’t seen for years. Eli has a compelling voice, the novel has an original concept and the ending had me turning pages swiftly to find out what happened next.

  • The tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris – a non-fiction story of a Jewish man imprisoned at Auschwitz who was responsible for inking the indelible numbers on all incoming prisoners. It’s a love story about the charming Lale who meets Gita in the camp, and a story of triumph and sadness and death and friendships. We read it for our bookclub this month.

  • The vein of gold by Julia Cameron – I’m still reading this one, a little bit every morning with my cup of tea before the kids wake up. Renowned creativity writer Julia Cameron has plenty of experience in guiding creatives in all sorts of fields. It’s lovely – and challenging at the same time.

  • City of Girls by Elizabeth Gilbert – I almost ran to my local bookshop to buy this one within days of its publication date. Marie Foleo interviews Liz here. I’m only a little way in but I am fully immersed in her world of 1940s showgirls and theatre life.

Let me know what you’ve been reading in the comments. It’s the perfect season for going to bed early with a page-turning book or for sitting by the fire with a compelling book and a hot drink or glass of wine!

2 comments

  1. I have recently read a non fiction book, Lab Girl by Hope Jahren. It is an entertaining read as author writes with self deprecating humour. There are some laugh out loud moments. Hope is a scientist and she alternates chapters with stories of her life, becoming a scientist, her constant battle for funding, her strong friendship with colleague, Bill and her life with husband and son. Every other chapter is facts on plants and trees. I must admit to skimming some of these chapters. But it is a good read.

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