I don’t need much encouragement to sit down with a new book and read. But for the past few years I’ve participated in the Goodreads Reading Challenge where you set yourself a target for the number of books to read in a year. In 2013 I read 51 books and last year I managed 60. I’ve set myself the same number this year, but only because some of the books I want to read are very hefty tomes and worth at least two in one. It doesn’t matter what kind of reading it is, I don’t think, so I will start including the non-fiction stuff I read, which mainly is writing orientated.
The other thing about the challenge is it provides you with a list of books you’ve read, the ability to review and rate them and highlight which books you’d like to read – so you have an easy reference for your next book order. I do read on Kindle, but usually these are more impulse purchases and offers I can’t resist. Goodreads also allows you to identify books you ‘didn’t finish’. There was a time when I would force myself to read a book even if I wasn’t enjoying it. Nowadays, my reading time is very precious balanced with my need to write my own projects, so if I’m struggling with a book I mark it as not finished in the hope to return one day to it. The only one I truly failed with was Wolf Hall, which I tried three times and hoped the TV series might help – I’m sad to report that I only managed one episode. I’m probably the only person in the world who didn’t like the adaptation either.
Anyway, on my bedside reading table at the moment (because I do most of my reading in bed, or relaxing after lunch in typical siesta type style).
- Just read: Donna Leon – Beastly Things. I love Donna Leon and her Inspector Brunetti character. All the stories -and there are in excess of 20- take place in Venice and, of course, are about crime. I’m sure in reality there isn’t as much bad things going on in the real city which I have visited once and fell in love with its uniqueness.
- Reading now: Flight Behaviour by Barbara Kingsolver – I am enjoying this story though it took me some time to grasp the Southern drawl which kept me thinking it was set some years ago, when actually it’s fairly recent. The descriptions of the butterflies are quite exquisite and I’m eager to discover Dellarobia’s story, strange name for a main character (some kind of wreath) but very original.
- To read: Game of Thrones 5 by George RR Martin– I’ve been watching the TV series and loving it so much I may go back and start reading them all over again. Apparently, Mr Martin is penning a sixth and committed to a seventh. These are some of the heavy tomes I spoke of earlier, over 1000 pages, including details on the characters, which are many. I should be reading The Luminaries, but that will have to wait.
So what’s on your reading table and why?