I am trying to do more reading. I love reading, but as I lack self control in so many areas (TV, shopping, food) I find that I get so absorbed in a book that it takes over my life and then I forget to sleep! And as someone who lacks sleep as it is, reading when I am working can be hazardous.
So I usually reserve reading novels for holidays. But one of 2019 goals is to try to read more, and be strict on reading a little each night. One way I will be able to keep myself reading is joining a book club! I was invited to one my friend runs, who meet for an Italian meal every six weeks to talk books and life in general. Sounds perfect, and that’s just enough books for me to keep reading all year.
I read books so fast that I can’t justify buying them. So my second strategy this summer was to join my local library and download their online Apps so I can read eBooks on my iPad.
I received a book for Christmas and caught up on some books I purchased at second hand bookshops through the year that I forgot I had!
Here’s what I have read so far in 2019.
The Clockmaker’s Daughter by Kate Morton
I really enjoy Kate Morton’s long epic stories of families and mysteries. This was one of my Christmas presents and I eagerly spent many days lying by the beach devouring her latest story, about a missing woman, an old historic house and a modern tale of love and longing. Like the other Kate Morton’s books, I was so captured until the end, where I felt a little let down, like the hype didn’t quite live up to the reveal. I felt the same way with The Lake House.
The Shifting Fog by Kate Morton
This Kate Morton was a bit difficult to get into, as the layout changed from chapter to chapter. However, I think it was my favourite story by Kate Morton so far. I just love getting drawn in to the character’s lives, and dipping into England’s past and old homes, which seems like Morton’s classic formula for a good long novel.
Then She Was Gone by Lisa Jewell
A great book by Lisa Jewell in the popular genre at the moment of ‘girl disappears’. A bit morbid when you consider the story line, but an enjoyable and easy read. I wasn’t warming to all characters and it was a little too coincidental, but I was intrigued to find out how the story ended.
Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman
This book by Gail Honeyman came highly recommended. I was reading it on my eReader and I find it is harder to get into those novels, as opposed to the physicality of holding a book (call me old-fashioned). I was soon hooked and felt endeared to the main character, even though other reviews didn’t warm to her. Her background of trauma and social awkwardness (which I perceived as Autism Spectrum Disorder) spoke to me, as these are day to day themes in my life as a teacher.
The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon
This book by Jennifer McMahon was also on the lines of ‘missing girls’ and was spooky, in a Pet Sematary kind of way. I was hooked on the story line and enjoyed the historical flashbacks finding out what happened, but I’m not sure I loved the ending, I suppose these ‘light horror’ books really aren’t my thing.
The Taxidermists Daughter by Kate Mosse
I quite enjoyed this Gothic thriller by Kate Mosse, which was quite different to the other novel I have read by her – ‘Labyrinth’. I also have ‘Sepulchre’ on my shelf to read next, which is linked to the story of ‘Labyrinth’.
Nine Perfect Strangers by Liane Moriarty
This was my first book club book of the year! I also asked for this one for Christmas, as I am a fan of Liane and have read all her books. I found this one a bit disappointing, especially the direction the book took in the middle, which the book club members agreed. There was also too many character ‘point of view’ chapters from my perspective, and unlike most of Moriarty’s novels, I wasn’t completely invested in any of the character’s stories.
Heritage by Judy Nunn
I love Judy Nunn’s epic historical novella’s set in prominent periods of Australia’s past. This was no exception. I laughed, I cried, I mourned, I felt hope and was caught up in the story of the people who lived in Cooma during the construction of the Snowy Mountain Scheme. Highly recommended.
The Book of Tomorrow by Cecelia Ahern
I’ve read a few Celia Ahern books now, most notably ‘Lyrebird’, ‘A Place called Here’ and ‘Thanks for the Memories’. I picked up ‘The Book of Tomorrow’ at a second hand book fair, and found it a bit dull and a bit silly. Also, Tamara was not a lead character that I can travel the book journey with, which I feel is key for my love of a book. I do like Ahern’s unusual story lines and will definitely keep an eye out for her new books in the future.
The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton
This was another book I bought throughout the year that has sat on the shelf, waiting for Summer holidays. This was the second Kate Morton book I read and I was keen to read it. It followed the usual Morton themes of historical times in England, family saga, a secret and a mystery to solve. Again I was let down by the actual reveal, which is disappointing in a 500 plus page novel! However, her writing is enjoyable enough to keep me hooked.