I used to be a voracious reader. My favourite book when I was 7 was The Dark Is Rising sequence; I had all five books in one volume and I remember it being so thick it wouldn’t fit in the drawer under my school desk. This continued all the way through school, and then… stopped. Perhaps it was university culture, the internet, the awkwardness of holding and reading a book once I’d had my spinal fusions. I don’t know. But I haven’t properly read for a long time, and that needs to change. I love reading! I love books!
The turning point for me was getting myself a Nook. I have the Simple Touch which I got for about £29 on sale. Bargain! It’s a fantastic e-reader and I’d highly recommend it. In a nutshell, it’s functional, super light, amazing battery life, easy to hold, has a touchscreen, holds plenty of books, and supports all formats (epub, PDF etc) unlike the Kindle. The downside is that the online store is rubbish, and the page turner buttons can be a bit tricky to use – although you can use the touchscreen to turn the page, so that doesn’t bother me. Did I mention it was super cheap?
Then I got given some books for Christmas, and I found a few around our house that I fancied reading. I decided I was going to get better at reading in 2015, because really there’s no excuse not to.
So I joined Goodreads. You can find my profile here, if you are a Goodread-er too. I’ve set myself the target of 25 books this year, to which my first thought was “Pah! That’s nothing!” and then I thought about how many books I read last year and it didn’t seem so low after all.
The first book I read this year was The Girl With No Name, a book I was given for Christmas. It’s the story of a lady called Marina Chapman who had an incredibly difficult childhood growing up in Columbia, and the tag line declares it as ‘The Incredible True Story of a Child Raised by Monkeys’. That’s certainly an attention-grabber, and you can read my review here. Overall I enjoyed it, but most of all I enjoyed reading on my commute. So much better than idly flicking through social media!
Now I have a little story of my own for you. Bear with me on this one.
On Friday, I was working from home, minding my own business when I heard a knock at the front door. Outside, I found a guy about my age who introduced himself as a local author, selling his book door-to-door. I was impressed by his courage and, having just finished The Girl With No Name, looking for my next read so I decided to buy the book. I wished him luck as he went on his way, and thought how lucky it was that I’d found my next book to read.
Of course I did a quick Google on the book to find out if anyone else had read it and what they thought. Not that I’m a sucker for groupthink, or anything. And here’s why I’m not going to post the title of the book or the author’s name – it turns out that not only was the book written about/for a girl he was properly stalking (like, call the police stalking), but he was also arrested for tracking down a (different) lady who gave the book a poor review on Goodreads and assaulting her, landing her in hospital. I wish I was making this up. What in the ever living name of all that is holy – why are people so loony?!
Side-eyeing the violent stalker’s book which I’d just paid the princely sum of £5 for, that night I picked up Jasmine Nights by Julia Gregson instead, which I borrowed from my sister. For free. Anyway, I quite like it so far; the writing style is decent and the characters have some interesting depths. It’s set in WW2 and follows the two protagonists through their experiences – of course, it’s a man and a woman in love with each other but we’ll see whether it turns into a straight romance or whether there’s a twist.
So, trying to put to the back of my mind the fact that aforementioned violent stalker knows where I live (and reads Goodreads), I’ll be over here curled up with a good book. It’s certainly the weather for it. Any book recommendations? What should I move on to next?
Linking up with Meg at Mingle Monday