The weekend is the perfect time to sit down, relax and spend a great couple of hours reading a book. If that book is shorter than 200 pages, it’s even possible to read it in full during only one weekend. Even if you are a content slow reader like me, who is not bothered anymore about not being able to read for many hours in a row, sometimes it just feels fulfilling to finish a book in two days. I haven’t managed to read many books in a single weekend, to be honest, but you could certainly read the following books in only two days (or even one).
Os Armários Vazios (Empty Wardrobes) by Maria Judite de Carvalho
When Dora Rosário’s husband died, she mourned him for 10 years. She couldn’t have anticipated how her outlook on life was about to change. Empty Wardrobes is a story about how three women let their lives be influenced by men. As it has an unreliable narrator, readers are forgiven for constantly questioning whether the characters actually acted in the way we are being told that they did.
The Return of the Soldier by Rebecca West
A story about the decisions made by the women in the life of Chris Baldry, The Return of the Soldier by Rebecca West features believable characters and various visual descriptions of the natural settings. After a long time without having news from Baldry, his wife and his cousin received the visit of Margaret Allington. She told them that he was in hospital with no memory of the last 15 years.
Sulphuric Acid by Amélie Nothomb
Although Sulphuric Acid by the Belgian author Amélie Nothomb is not especially character-focused, it’s introspective. A satire on reality TV, it questions why people choose to watch such programmes even when they only offer images of suffering.
In Ghost Wall, Sarah Moss denounces extremism, xenophobia, violence against women and misogyny without creating a political pamphlet. Instead, she penned an atmospheric and convincing character study, despite the middle section feeling a bit repetitive. Silvie and her parents join an encampment in rural Northumberland to recreate life during the Iron Age.
The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark
Miss Brodie believed herself to have been at her prime in the 1930s. She revelled in the influence she had over her pupils, particularly a group of girls known as the Brodie set. The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie is engrossing and occasionally funny. It could even have been a longer book.
The Penelopiad by Margaret Atwood
The Penelopiad is an enthralling and occasionally sarcastic Ancient Greek Myth retelling. After her death, Penelope muses about the events of the Odyssey. She married Odysseus when she was 15 years old. Despite being remembered for her fidelity while he was fighting in the Trojan war, Penelope wouldn’t advise other women to follow her example.
The Murderess by Alexandros Papadiamantis
Hadoula had various children, three of them women. When her granddaughter was born, some vile feelings took over her. Not only does The Murderess feature a complex main character who struggles to distinguish right from wrong, but it also explores how being born female was almost considered to be the result from a curse by some.
Moonstone: The Boy Who Never Was by Sjón
Equally heart-warming and heart-breaking, Moonstone: The Boy Who Never Was has as main character Máni, a 16-year-old motherless boy who lives in Reykjavik with the sister of his great-grandmother. His sexual identity is of great importance to the development of the plot.
Have you read any of these books? What other books would you recommend to read in a single weekend? Tell me in the comments!