The Bookdate, Volume Seven

Any excuse to talk books and I am there. Speaking of which, I have found a book club to go to(!!). I will keep you updated on how it goes but I am excited, even though it it still a couple of weeks away. Today though, I am back with another bookdate post. This was a series I started in 2017 and am hoping to continue this year. It probably won't be monthly, perhaps bimonthly if I am disciplined but I didn't want to retire it completely because, well I missed it. As I can't resist the urge to type it, keep reading after the page break...

Recently Read: / Call Me By Your Name x Andre Anciman. This book. I feel like I've told everybody to read this recently and unlike the time I did something similar with Twilight, I don't regret it at all. The book which inspired the award-winning film is told from the perspective of Elio a teenager on the cusp of adulthood, with a fondness for transcribing music and reading in the sunshine. He strikes up an unforgettable relationship with Oliver, a visiting college student to Italy for the Summer. Anciman's prose is rich, vivid and beautiful. I've never read something quite like it and honestly I loved it. I can see myself returning to this in a few month's time actually. Or perhaps every Summer.  / Where'd You Go, Bernadette x Maria Semple. Another book I wanted to read before the movie is released. It's a book I have had on my radar for a while though but for some reason it took me this long to get around to it. Anyway, Bernadette, a former award-winning architect is a source of fascination for a group of parents from her daughter's school. She's intriguing and her unusual behaviour lures them in. There is many a reason for that, all which are explored throughout the story. This book is told almost exclusively through letters, emails and text exchange with only a smattering of narrative. I really enjoy books like this for some reason and the epistolary text lends itself well to these types of books. It's hilarious, unputdownable and I really found myself rooting for Bernadette. I cannot wait to see Cate Blanchett bring her to life.  / All The Lives I Want x Alana Massey. Ok so I haven't totally finished this book, only because I intend to buy it and had to rush reading my library copy before I returned it. Massey's essays exploring the way in which women in celebrity culture are placed on our own individualised pedestals, as well as the way in which it impacts us and them are brilliant. Winona Ryder vs Gwyneth Paltrow was not a pairing I expected to see but it made for a really fantastic essay. Her writing on Sylvia Plath, the Lisbon Sisters-from The Virgin Suicides and all the ideals they represent stood out to me as well. I'm not selling it as well as I would like and perhaps that is because I read it so speedily. Let me reread it and I will report back.

Read Freely: Apologies if I have touched on this already but for the last few years I've participated in the Goodreads Reading Challenge. It is motivating but it also seems to send me in to a bit of a quantity over quality type frenzy. I was finding my reading halfhearted and unsatisfying last year. While I cannot wholly attribute it to an app, I definitely think it didn't do my reading any favours. This year I am still tracking what I read, although I'm not focusing on the number of books, the length of text and vice versa. Last month I read eight books which, given how busy I was felt like an achievement. That being said, I am more focused on what I read, rather than how often and how much of it I read. Long may it continue.

The Wishlist: Keeping it very brief this month but this book that follows feels very important. *How To Break Up with Your Phone x Catherine Price. The fact we need books like this is pretty telling, don't you think? I'm not judging anyone because I'd love to not feel like my phone is an extension of my right arm. After reading this brilliant article by Sali Hughes, I am all the more determined to get ahold of a copy sooner rather than later. 

Bookshops I Love: I'm thinking of doing regular features about bookshops I rate. Would anyone be interested in that? I realise it's probably not the most interesting thing in the world but if you're keen on knowing my frequented literary haunts, sing out.

-What have you been reading recently?

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