Vintage Didion, by Joan Didion (2004)

This little book is one of the Vintage Readers that were released in the early 2000s. As pointed out on the back cover, this is a small collection of Joan Didion's essays that are a good introduction to her work. The essays cover politics, crime, the war in El Salvador, crime and corruption in Miami,… Continue reading Vintage Didion, by Joan Didion (2004)

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Men Explain Things to Me: And Other Essays, by Rebecca Solnit (2014)

Like most people, I am familiar with the term 'mansplaining'. I've also heard a fair bit of excitement about Rebecca Solnit as an interesting writer. Her essay Men Explain Things to Me is the origin of the term, something I only learned seeing the word in circulation - when it first became a thing there… Continue reading Men Explain Things to Me: And Other Essays, by Rebecca Solnit (2014)

Re-reading: Alone in Berlin by Hans Fallada (1947)

I first read Alone in Berlin in 2011 just after I'd left university. I'd read a lot of books about the Second World War for a course at university, and my further reading (and time on Twitter) led me to this novel. It was only translated into English in 2009, so in 2011 it was… Continue reading Re-reading: Alone in Berlin by Hans Fallada (1947)

The Women of the Castle by Jessica Shattuck (2017)

[A side note: in the US, the title is The Women in the Castle.] I’ve always been interested in the literature of the Second World War, ever since a course on the Literatures of Genocide at university. I’ve read history books, personal accounts, and novels such as Alone in Berlin and City of Women; so,… Continue reading The Women of the Castle by Jessica Shattuck (2017)

By Grand Central Station I Sat Down and Wept by Elizabeth Smart (1945)

This is one of those books that I had heard of vaguely and meant to read for ages - but for some reason didn't. Luckily my reading lists project is getting me to read more of these sorts of books. And so I finally ordered a copy of By Grand Central Station I Sat Down and… Continue reading By Grand Central Station I Sat Down and Wept by Elizabeth Smart (1945)

A Broken Mirror by Mercè Rodoreda (1962)

I came upon this book entirely by chance in Waterstone's - it was the cover that made me pick it up, and I am so, so glad I did. A Broken Mirror is described on the inside cover as "A haunting classic of modern Catalan literature from one of Spain's most prestigious writers", but honestly… Continue reading A Broken Mirror by Mercè Rodoreda (1962)

Leopard at the Door by Jennifer McVeigh (2017)

I loved Jennifer McVeigh's first novel The Fever Tree (my review is here) so I was eager to read her new novel Leopard at the Door. It has a similar setup, in that it's central character is a young British woman thrown into turmoil on foreign soil. This time its Rachel, a British woman returning… Continue reading Leopard at the Door by Jennifer McVeigh (2017)

All the Good Things by Clare Fisher

This novel was one of four that I accepted for review from Viking, and it was the one I was least sure about. I liked the initial premise, the question of whether doing a bad thing makes you a bad person, and I am always intrigued by debut novels. Not knowing much more than that,… Continue reading All the Good Things by Clare Fisher

Gone: A Girl, A Violin, A Life Unstrung by Min Kym

This book was one of the few review copies I have been accepting recently, and I'm glad I decided to read and review it, because it's something a little different - but once I got into it I realised it actually is the sort of thing I like. Gone: A Girl, A Violin, A Life… Continue reading Gone: A Girl, A Violin, A Life Unstrung by Min Kym

The Witchfinder’s Sister by Beth Underdown

I have read a couple of books about English witch trials, and the history of why they happened, so this book wasn't entirely new ground for me - but is certainly an original take on the period the events. The Witchfinder's Sister gives the infamous Matthew Hopkins a fictional sister in the form of Alice,… Continue reading The Witchfinder’s Sister by Beth Underdown