The Top 36 from the Best Books of 2016 List of Lists

best-books-2016

This is my community service to book bloggers – a list of the books that appear most frequently on all of the lists I listed on Best Books of 2016 – A List of Lists. So before I have to write the word ‘list’ again, here it is, the 2016 Commonly-Agreed-by-the-People-Who-Publish-Best-of-2016-Book-Lists-Before-December-31 top 36 books. Continue reading

Book vs. Film: The Mysteries of Pittsburgh

book vs film mysteries of pittsburgh

Book.

  • Because the movie casting was just wrong, wrong, wrong. Particularly Cleveland. And where the hell was the (pivotal) character of Arthur?
  • Book had a subtle but distinct sense of place. Movie – not so.
  • The ‘themes’ in the book (notably sexuality) are carefully played out. In the movie, they are as subtle as a drag queen’s eye shadow.

See my review of The Mysteries of Pittsburgh by Michael Chabon here.

Top Ten Tuesday – Books I HAD To Buy…But Are Still Sitting On My Shelf Unread

top-ten-row-1

I need a ‘pause’ button.

I read great reviews (thanks fellow bloggers) and then hit Amazon and moments later I have the book on my Kindle. Such is the joy (and the agony in terms of my wallet) of online shopping.

I have tempered my impulse buying somewhat. Somewhat…

I use ‘wishlists’, Kindle samples and the ‘Want to Read’ feature on Goodreads as a way of reminding me of books that look like my kind of thing. But still, sometimes the need is too great. And I wish I could hit ‘pause’ instead of ‘Add to Shopping Cart’.

Today’s Top Ten Tuesday topic, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish is the Top Ten Books I HAD To Buy…But Are Still Sitting On My Shelf Unread. Here are the books that bypassed my wishlists, samples and want-to-read lists and instead were bought immediately. Because I couldn’t wait. And yet, they haven’t even been opened…. Continue reading

Top Ten Tuesday – Top Ten Books I Resolve to Read in 2013

top-ten-row-1

Resolutions. Some years I embrace them, other years I save time and discard all thoughts of them one minute into the New Year. I have no grand plans for 2013, short of a vague desire to ‘get back on the water’ (in my life before kids I rowed. I miss it. Every time I see a crew on the Yarra there’s a twinge of envy. Maybe 2013 is the year to get back in a boat… Just to see if I still love it as much as I did then).

But on to resolutions I can keep. Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature created and hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week a new ‘top ten’ challenge is posted – anyone can join in. This week’s topic is Top Ten Books I Resolve to Read in 2013.

So I’m cheating a little on this. My first five book resolutions are actually book lists… See what I did there? I cleverly turned a Top Ten into a Top Forty (of fifty… or sixty). Continue reading

Top Ten Tuesday – Favorite New-To-Me Authors I Read In 2012

top-ten-new-to-me-authors

Well, finally a list that can’t possibly contain any John Irving (but see what I did there, slipped the name in… Are you thinking about Owen Meany now?!).

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature created and hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week a new ‘top ten’ challenge is posted – anyone can join in. This week’s topic is Top Ten Favorite New-To-Me Authors I Read In 2012.

1. Chad Harbach – The Art of Fielding took Harbach ten years to write. I sincerely hope we don’t have to wait a decade for his next book.

2. Emily Perkins – New Zealand born Perkins thrilled me with her exquisite saga, The Forrests.

3. Laura Dave – for sharp chick-lit. Continue reading

‘My Ideal Bookshelf’ by Thessaly La Force and Jane Mount

I just came into possession of the most divine book – My Ideal Bookshelf, edited by Thessaly La Force and illustrated by Jane Mount. Let me stress, if you’re looking for a Christmas gift for book lovers (and they are difficult to buy for because you don’t know what they’ve already read…) this book is perfect. Continue reading

‘The Mysteries of Pittsburgh’ by Michael Chabon

It’s Gatsby meets Less Than Zero

I might be offending author Michael Chabon by comparing his debut novel, The Mysteries of Pittsburgh, to some of the early work of Brett Easton Ellis (Less Than Zero was published only a few years before Mysteries but I guess four years is a long time in the world of publishing).

Anyway, think of the male friendship dynamic that was going on in Gatsby and add a layer of eighties Brat Pack. For good measure add a furore over the gay themes in the book. And let’s not forget Chabon went on to win a Pulitzer Prize (so he clearly knows what he’s doing).

Continue reading

Enforced down-time = reading bonanza

I have a little hospital stay coming up. If it weren’t for the pain I’m likely going to experience, I’d be bloody excited about the prospect of four days lying in bed with nothing to do but read.

Pain or not, it’s best to be prepared. So I turned to my reading pile to decide what I’ll take along.

As well as the TBR list I published earlier in the week and also the titles I haven’t yet tackled from a list earlier this year (The Snow Child of course, The Freudian Slip by Marion von Adlerstein and 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami), I’m also adding these six books – Continue reading