New year, new books. Well, at least they are new to my shelves. At the beginning of this month, I bought a few books that I have either been wanting to read for a while or that I have discovered more recently. During this year, I will try to read both the books that I’ve just bought and the ones that I already owned before buying new ones. However, I have a feeling that that won’t happen and that I won’t resist the temptation of buying more books.
These are the books I bought this month:
The Muse by Jessie Burton
I loved Jessie Burton’s debut novel, The Miniaturist, and ever since The Muse was released I have been wanting to read it. However, as I much prefer paperbacks, I patiently waited until now. I plan to read it pretty soon to know everything about a lost masterpiece and the connection between the characters from two time periods – 1967 and 1936.
The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
This book has been on my wish list for years. As an adaptation for TV will be broadcast pretty soon, I thought this was the perfect time to finally buy it and read it.
“The Republic of Gilead offers Offred only one option: to breed. If she deviates, she will, like all dissenters, be hanged at the wall or sent out to die slowly of radiation sickness. But even a repressive state cannot obliterate desire – neither Offred’s nor that of the two men on which her future hangs.”
Autumn by Ali Smith
Ali Smith is one of those authors I have been nervous to pick up a book by, since, from what I have heard, they are far from easy reads. Autumn really caught my attention, though, because it focuses on how the world is getting more divided and takes place after the Brexit referendum. Moreover, although I am not a fan of hardbacks, I have to say that the book cover, featuring just half a dust jacket, is beautiful.
Daphnis and Chloe by Longus
Jean Menzies from the Jean Bookishthoughts YouTube channel has recommended this Ancient Greek novel quite a few times. When I realised that it had been published as a Penguin Little Black Classic, I couldn’t help but buy it. The story is about how “two young lovers battle pirates, rivals and their own confused feelings”.
Gooseberries by Anton Chekhov
To pursue my goal of reading more short stories this year, I bought another Penguin Little Black Classic. This one features three short stories by Anton Chekhov, one being ‘Gooseberries’, which gives its name to this short book.
The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith
This is another book that is going to be adapted for TV this year. It is the first crime novel of the series written by J.K. Rowling under the Robert Galbraith pseudonym. It all starts “when a troubled model falls to her death from a Mayfair balcony”. Although this was thought to be a suicide, her brother has doubts and employs the private detective Cormoran Strike to investigate.
The Black Project by Gareth Brookes
One of my resolutions for 2017 was to give graphic novels another chance. This was the reason why I bought The Black Project. I saw Jen Campbell rave about it on her YouTube channel and got the impression that it didn’t have many speech balloons, which is my main problem with graphic novels. So, I thought this was a good one to start with.
Diving Belles by Lucy Wood
I really don’t know much about this collection of short stories, besides it having a beautiful cover, which seemed like a good reason to buy it. According to the blurb, “in these stories, hopes, regrets and memories are entangled with catfish, wreckers’ lamps and baying hounds as Cornish folklore slips into everyday life”.
Orlando by Virginia Woolf
Virginia Woolf is another author I have been delaying reading for quite a while. But the newest Vintage Classics Edition really caught my attention and I intend to collect a few. I’m starting with Orlando, “a funny, exuberant tale that examines the very nature of sexuality”.
Treasure Island and The Ebb-Tide by Robert Louis Stevenson
Last summer I started watching the TV show Black Sails and that was the reason why this book caught my attention, since the show is kind of a prequel to the book. It “is the story of young Jim Hawkins, who discovers a treasure map marked with an X. But Jim has no way of knowing that Long John Silver, his friendly new crew-mate on the quest for the buried hoard, is determined to keep the treasure for himself, at any cost”.
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
I haven’t read a dystopian novel for a while. With all that is happening around the world, this seems an appropriate time to return to them. In Fahrenheit 451, the reader is presented with a society in which books are forbidden and thus burnt.
Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
Lately, I have seen many people recommending Daphne du Maurier’s books, and the most loved one apparently is Rebecca. A young woman marries Maxim de Winter and, when moving to his estate, has to deal with the phantom of his beautiful first wife, Rebecca. I’m quite intrigued by what this novel has to offer.
All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
I don’t know much about this book, besides it being set during the Second World War, a time period I usually like reading about. “The stories of Marie-Laure and Werner illuminate the ways, against all odds, people try to be good to one another”.
The Butcher’s Hook by Janet Ellis
I have only read and heard good things about this novel and the blurb really got me interested. “At nineteen, Anne Jaccob, the elder daughter of well-to-do parents, meets Fub, the butcher’s apprentice and is awakened to the possibilities of joy and passion. (…) Anne is an unusual young woman and is determined to pursue her own happiness in her own way… even if that means getting a little blood on her hands”.
Have you read any of these books? Which ones do you recommend the most?