However many times I start a new month thinking I will grant myself more space for other pursuits, I get caught up in reading and my time is gone. I have so many good books impatiently waiting on my TBR pile – this remains such a delicious non-problem. Looking at my stats for November it does at least appear to have been productive. I reviewed twenty books on my blog which means, for the first time this year, I am on track with my Goodreads challenge. I also attended two fabulous author events in Bath, probably my last in 2018 as I eschew the festive season crowds.
Early in the month I noticed some discussion online where bloggers were bemoaning the lack of shares by authors and publishers of their posts. Over the years I have watched a small but steady trickle of bloggers bowing out as the pleasure of the pursuit has waned. This got me thinking about why I devote so much time to producing content that I hope supports those who provide us with books. I process my thoughts by writing them out so put up this post on Writing, reviews and sharing on social media. If writers, and that includes book bloggers, wrote for the plaudits many would not persist.
When I say ‘provide us with books’ I don’t mean the free review copies of books that publishers send out to bloggers such as myself – that is another regular accusation from those who do not seem to understand our motivation.
I did go to the library this month as I was eager to read the Booker Prize Winner, Milkman. I enjoyed Anna Burns’ first novel many years ago and was delighted to see an author from my country of birth win this prestigious award.
I also put aside time to read those books on the Goldsmiths Prize shortlist that were languishing on my TBR pile. I would have liked to have seen Murmur win that award.
As you can see from my links to November’s posts below it has been an eclectic reading month – just how I like it to maintain freshness and interest. I have also made a concerted effort to read books that have been on my TBR pile for some time, alongside the newer releases scheduled.
Translated fiction and short stories
And the Wind Sees All by Guðmundur Andri Thorsson (translated by Bjørg Arnadottir and Andrew Cauthery), published by Peirene Press
The Cake Tree In The Ruins by Akiyuki Nosaka (translated by Ginny Tapley Takemori), published by Pushkin Press
Shadows on the Tundra by Dalia Grinkevičiutė (translated by Delija Valiukenas), published by Peirene Press
Stone Mattress: Nine Tales by Margaret Atwood, published by Bloomsbury
the uncorrected Billy Childish, published by Tangerine Press
Chicken Unga Fever by Dr Phil Whitaker, published by Salt
One of my fellow book bloggers commented recently on the number of excellent book events I have had the opportunity to attend. I concur, and these two were special, as you can read in my linked posts.
With the arrival of December we enter into the festive season with its lists of books to buy and best books of the year – more on that from me in due course. I am also compiling a list of those books I am most looking forward to in 2019. Whatever else may be going on in the world, our reading pleasure continues to be well catered for.
If you are considering buying books – they make the best presents and are so easy to wrap – do please support your local independent bookshop. For those like me who dislike crowds remember many bookshops also sell online.
Or you can buy direct from the publisher – for the small presses especially this helps hugely as they struggle to cover costs selling through the mega site that shall not be named. If you click on the covers of the books above you will be offered further information on each book and how to buy it.
As ever I wish to thank the publishers who send me their titles to review – the arrival of a book parcel makes my day.
My thanks also to those who share my words across their social media platforms. I don’t say it enough but your support is always appreciated.