Overdue update on Christmas and birthday books

As I said in my last post, life has rather gotten in the way of blogging over the last month or so (probably more than that), so I am only just getting around to organising posts I meant to write and publish a while ago…

First I must ask you to cast your mind back to the excitement of getting presents at Christmas, and then double it, because my birthday is just after Christmas and so I get lots of presents around that time. Not too bad.

I actually received fewer books than I expected to, seeing as I asked for quite a few, but I am so pleased with the ones I did get. And aren’t they pretty!thumb_img_9248_1024

These were all on my wish list apart from The Prose Factory, which was a pleasant surprise from my fiancé’s mother.  I’d never even heard of it but it looks fascinating so I’m looking forward to getting into it at some point.

I’ve just finished reading the book about Katherine Howard and have a blog post in the works. It has made me really want to read more about the women of the Tudor period, particularly Henry VIII’s other wives, as well as Elizabeth I and Mary. I am particularly keen on reading about my namesake as she has always held a certain mysterious magic for me and I would love to understand more about her life and reign, and her character.

I also asked for every Shirley Jackson book that I haven’t already got, and I am very pleased to now have Let Me Tell You and Dark Tales, especially as the latter is a very nice little hardback with a bright green back cover. I can’t wait to get back into more of Jackson’s eerie and wonderful short stories.

I asked for The Devil in the White City as it’s something I’ve been meaning to read for quite a while. The book is set in 1893 and “tells the stories of two men: Daniel H. Burnham, the architect responsible for the [Chicago World’s] Fair’s construction, and H.H. Holmes, a serial killer masquerading as a charming doctor.” (quote from GoodReads). I think both these men have interesting stories, and it just sounds like a fascinating time. It also doesn’t hurt that H.H. Holmes was the inspiration for the character of J.P. March in American Horror Story: Hotel – and for the hotel itself.

My fiancé’s amazing brother and sister also got a set of Vintage Classics editions of Virginia Woolf, which was a lovely surprise.

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I’ve some of these but not all, and I’m very glad I get to read them in such lovely editions! I plan to start with A Room of One’s Own as I’ve never actually gotten around to reading it…

So there you go – lots of amazing reading to be getting on with. I did also get vouchers for Foyles so there may even more books soon, what a surprise!

Happy reading!

Christmas and birthday haul: new year, new books!

Greeting all! I hope Christmas and the New Year have treated you well. So far 2016 for me has been my birthday, and then five days of being ill (today is day five…). So not the best start in the world. But, I am happy to start a new year and excited for what is to come. Christmas and New Year were lovely, and I was very pleased to receive a few books. I used to get loads for Christmas and my birthday, but now I actually don’t ask for many (as I have so many already!!) so luckily I now only get a few. So here they are:

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Suffice to say I am QUITE PLEASED. Witchfinders, The Blind Assassin, and the Witchfinder and Hellboy books were all on my wishlist, so I half expected those. The Silk Roads was from my boyfriend’s mum, always a fan of lovely new hardbacks, and I can’t wait to get stuck in – though I think I’ll only be able to read that one at home as it is so massive I don’t want to carry it around anywhere! Eat Pretty was from my cousin and looks like a great way to get started with a healthier diet (plus there are recipes for DIY beauty products, which look great). My sister bought me The Book of Strange New Things, which I’ve heard good things about, and I think is her way of trying to get me to read more sci-fi, which she loves. I’ve chosen it as my next read.

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I’ve also just finished reading Witchfinders, which I will write about soon.

Which books are you starting 2016 with?