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    • Michelle

      Important Announcement!   07/28/2018

      Dear BCF members,   This forum has been running now for many years, and over that time we have seen many changes. Generalised forums are nowhere near as popular as they once were, and they have been very much taken over by blogs, vlogs and social media discussions. Running a forum well takes money, and a lot of care and attention, as there is so much which goes on behind the scenes to keep things running smoothly.   With all of this in mind, and after discussion within the current moderator team, the decision has been made to close this forum in its current format. I know that this will disappoint a lot of our long term members, but I want to reassure you that it's not a decision which has been taken lightly.    The remaining moderator team have agreed that we do not want to lose everything which is special about our home, and so we are starting a brand new facebook group, so that people can stay in touch, and discussions can continue. We can use it for free and should be easier for us to run (it won't need to be updated or hosted). We know not everyone has FaceBook, but we hope that those of you who are interested will join the group. We will share the link, and send invites as soon as we are ready to go. Added: We may as well get this going, find us here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/195289821332924/   The forum will close to new registrations, but will remain open for some time, to allow people to collect up any information, reading lists etc they need to, and to ensure they have contact details for those they wish to stay in touch with.    The whole team feel sad to say goodbye, but we also feel that it's perhaps time and that it feels like the right choice. We hope we can stay in touch with all of you through our new FaceBook group.   I personally want to thank everyone who has helped me moderate the forum, both in the past and the present, and I also want to thank every single person who has visited, and shared their love of books.. I'm so proud of everything we've achieved, and the home we built.   Please visit the new section in the Lounge section to discuss this further, ask questions etc.
chesilbeach

Claire's book list 2013

Recommended Posts

2012 reading blog - 145 books

2011 reading blog - 141 books

2010 reading blog - 130 books

2009 reading blog - 143 books

2008 reading list - 63 books

2007 reading list - 97 books

2006 reading list - 82 books

 

2013 BOOKS READ

 

January

1. My Love Lies Bleeding by Alyxandra Harvey

2. Blood Feud by Alyxandra Harvey

3. Mr Penumbra's 24-hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan

4. Tomorrow, When The War Began by John Marsden

5. Polly by M. C. Beaton

6. Hunter's Moon by F. E. Heaton

7. Qissat by Various

8. Sightlines by Kathleen Jamie

9. Molly by M. C. Beaton

10. Ciao Bella: In Search of New Relatives and Dante in Italy by Helena Frith Powell

11. Ginny by M. C. Beaton

12. Out For Blood by Alyxandra Harvey

13. The Sweet Life in Paris by David Lebovitz

14. The Dead of the Night by John Marsden

15. The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson

16. Uncommon Criminals by Ally Carter

February

17. Mapp and Lucia by E. F. Benson

18. Masquerade by F. E. Heaton

19. Dangerous Liaisons by Pierre Choderlos de Laclos

20. A House In Mayfair by M. C. Beaton

21. How Steeple Sinderby Wanderers Won The F. A. Cup by J. L. Carr

22. Challenging Zed by Joss Stirling

23. Back Story by David Mitchell

24. Susie by M. C. Beaton

March

25. The Pledge by Kimberly Derting

26. Bleeding Hearts by Alyxandra Harvey

27. Blood Moon by Alyxandra Harvey

28. Blood Prophecy by Alyxandra Harvey

29. The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead

30. The Indigo Spell by Richelle Mead

31. Pulse by Tricia Rayburn

32. To The Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf (Abandoned - 68%)

33. Something Secret This Way Comes by Sierra Dean

34. A Bloody Good Secret by Sierra Dean

35. Secret Santa by Sierra Dean

36. Deep Dark Secret by Sierra Dean

37. Keeping Secret by Sierra Dean

38. Grave Secret by Sierra Dean

39. House Rules by Chloe Neill

40. The Thirty-Nine Steps by John Buchan

41. To Kill A Warlock by H. P . Mallory

42. Armed and Fabulous by Camilla Chafer

43. The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett (read by Alan Bennett)

44. Bound To Remember by Lola James

April

45. Once Bitten by Trina M. Lee

46. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J. K. Rowling (read by Stephen Fry)

47. Fire Burn and Cauldron Bubble by H. P . Mallory

48. The Art of Desctruction by Stephen Cole (read by Don Warrington)

49. Jeeves in the Offing by P. G. Wodehouse (read by Simon Callow)

50. Annabelle by M. C. Beaton

51. The Mating by Nicky Charles

52. The Keeping by Nicky Charles

53. Bonded by Nicky Charles

54. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J. K. Rowling (read by Stephen Fry)

55. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë

56. Betrayed by Nicky Charles

57. The Finding by Nicky Charles

58. Water by Terra Harmony

59. Life Class by Pat Barker

60. A Bit of Bite by Cynthia Eden

61. The Time Machine by H. G. Wells

62. Trouble in Mudbug by Jana DeLeon

63. Double Crossed by Ally Carter

64. A Job From Hell by Jayde Scott

65. Stage Fright by Elizabeth Wells

66. A Hidden Fire by Elizabeth Hunter

67. In A New York Minute by Eleanor Moran

68. The Perfect Audition by Kate Forster

May

69. Branded by Keary Taylor

70. The Westerby Inheritance by M. C. Beaton

71. Death at Wentwater Court by Carola Dunn

72. Single In The City by Michele Gorman

73. The Various Flavours of Coffee by Anthony Capella

74. The Secret Guide to Dating Monsters by Sierra Dean

75. Mrs Harris Goes to Paris by Paul Gallico

76. Fallen Grace by Mary Hooper

77. Mrs Harris Goes to New York by Paul Gallico

78. Misfortune Cookie by Michele Gorman

79. Man Walks Into A Room by Nicole Krauss

80. Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder

81. If You Find Me by Emily Murdoch

82. Under The Skin by Michel Faber (Abandoned 23%)

83. Diving Belles by Lucy Wood

84. Welcome to Rosie Hopkins' Sweet Shop of Dreams by Jenny Colgan

85. The Marquis Takes A Bride by M. C. Beaton

86. Lady Anne's Deception by M. C. Beaton

87. Heist Society: Perfect Scoundrels by Ally Carter

88. Skios by Michael Fray

June

89. Miss Phryne Fisher Investigates by Kerry Greenwood

90. Moon Over Soho by Ben Aaronovitch

91. Flying Too High by Kerry Greenwood

92. Penelope by M. C. Beaton

93. Moon Dance by J. R. Rain

94. Dark Horse by J. R. Rain

95. The Vampire With The Dragon Tattoo by J. R. Rain

96. The Third Day, The Frost by John Marsden

97. Murder on the Ballarat Train by Kerry Greenwood

98. Henrietta by M. C. Beaton

99. The Rising by Kelley Armstrong

100. The Year of the Hare by Arto Paasilinna

101. The Hand That First Held Mine by Maggie O'Farrell

102. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

103. Peaches for Monsieur le Curé by Joanne Harris

104. Something Borrowed by Richelle Mead

105. Opal Fire by Barbra Annino

July

106. House of Suns by Alastair Reynolds

107. The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce

108. The Journal of Dora Damage by Belinda Starling

109. Death at Victoria Dock by Kerry Greenwood

110. The House on the Strand by Daphne Du Maurier

111. Where Have All The Boys Gone? by Jenny Colgan

112. Newes From The Dead by Mary Hooper

113. Bella Summer Takes A Chance by Michelle Gorman

114. No and Me by Delphine De Vigan

115. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J. K. Rowling (read by Stephen Fry)

116. The Missing Manuscript of Jane Austen by Syrie James

117. High Tide by Hugh Hastings

118. Our Songbirds by Matt Sewell

August

119. Fibber in the Heat by Miles Jupp

120. Greenery Street by Denis Mackail

121. Lady Into Fox by David Garnett

122. My Animals and Other Family by Clare Balding

123. Biting Bad by Chloe Neill

124. Teacher, Teacher by Jack Sheffield

125. Bloodstone by Barbra Annino

126. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J. K. Rowling (read by Stephen Fry)

127. Road To Rouen by Ben Hatch

128. Plain Jane by M. C. Beaton

129. The Moving Toyshop by Edmund Crispin

130. Gods and Warriors by Michelle Paver

131. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J. K. Rowling (read by Stephen Fry)

132. A Season in Sinji by J. L. Carr

133. Wilma Tenderfoot and the Case of the Rascal's Revenge by Emma Kennedy

134. Shattered Promises by Jessica Sorensen

135. The Winter Garden Mystery by Carola Dunn

September

136. Etiquette and Espionage by Gail Carriger

137. The Little Village School by Gervase Phinn

138. Requiem for a Mezzo by Carola Dunn

139. Lady Fortescue Steps Out by M. C. Beaton

140. Immortal Beloved by Cate Tiernan

141. The Wicked Stepmother by M. C. Beaton

142. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J. K. Rowling (read by Stephen Fry)

143. Cupcakes at Carringtons by Alexandra Brown (Abandoned - 46%)

144. Murder on the Flying Scotsman by Carola Dunn

145. Fated by Benedict Jacka

146. Pretty Polly by M. C. Beaton

147. United We Spy by Ally Carter

148. The Misunderstanding by Irène Némirovsky

149. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling (read by Stephen Fry)

150. Tiger's Eye by Barbra Annino

151. Damsel in Distress by Carola Dunn

152. The Kraken Wakes by John Wyndham

153. The End of Me by Tara Brown

October

154. Valentine Grey by Sandi Toksvig

155. Dead in the Water by Carola Dunn

156. Mr Knightley's Diary by Amanda Grange

157. Poltergeeks by Sean Cummings

158. Abyss by Tricia Rayburn

159. Mansfield Park by Jane Austen (read by Juliet Stevenson)

160. Styx and Stones by Carola Dunn

161. Secret Unleashed by Sierra Dean

162. Love Song by Alex Miller

163. Austenland by Shannon Hale

November

164. The Misremembered Man by Christina McKenna

165. Girl, Stolen by April Henry

166. The Radleys by Matt Haig

167. Miss Tonks Turns to Crime by M. C. Beaton

168. Mrs Budley Falls From Grace by M. C. Beaton

169. Sir Philip's Folly by M. C. Beaton

170. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (read by Lindsay Duncan)

171. Colonel Sandhurst to the Rescue by M. C. Beaton

172. Back in Society by M. C. Beaton

173. Lighthousekeeping by Jeanette Winterson

December

174. Hubble Bubble by Jane Lovering

175. Once You Break A Knuckle by D. W. Wilson

176. Haunting Violet by Alyxandra Harvey

177. Crow Stone by Jenni Mills

178. The Borrower by Rebecca Makkai

179. Rake's Progress by M. C. Beaton

180. Death Comes To Pemberley by P. D. James

181. Christmas at High Rising by Angela Thirkell

182. Frost Hollow Hall by Emma Carroll

183. Alex, the dog and the inoperable door by Ross Montgomery

Edited by chesilbeach

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2013 BOOKS TO BE READ

1. Head Over Heel: Seduced by Southern Italy by Chris Harrison
2. Twelve Minutes of Love: A Tango Story by Kapka Kassabova
3. The Rehearsal by Eleanor Catton
4. Can Anyone Hear Me? by Peter Baxter
5. Capital by John Lanchester
6. A Lady Cyclist's Guide to Kashgar by Suzanne Joinson
7. The Perfect Retreat by Kate Forster
8. Gemma Bovery by Posy Simmonds
9. Q: A Love Story by Evan Mandery
10. Sea and Shore Cornwall by Lisa Woollett
11. Strands by Jean Sprackland
12. The Case of the Man Who Died Laughing by Tarquin Hall
13. Circle Line by Steffan Meyric Hughes
14. Die Laughing by Carola Dunn (DD No. 12)
15. Gunpowder Plot by Carola Dunn (DD No. 15)
16. Sheer Folly by Carola Dunn (DD No. 18)
17. Trouble at the Little Village School by Gervase Phinn
18. Little Sacrifices by Jamie Scott
19. Tout Sweet by Karen Wheeler
20. Citadel by Kate Mosse
21. Angel Fire by L. A. Weatherley
22. Love With a Chance of Drowning by Torre DeRoche
23. The Horologican by Mark Forsyth
24. Rainbird's Revenge by M. C. Beaton (HftS No. 6)
25. The Rook by Daniel O'Malley
26. All Creatures Great and Small by James Herriot
27. Revenge Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger
28. How To Eat Out by Giles Coren
29. Saplings by Noel Streatfeild
30. Sky Hawk by Gill Lewis
31. Alex, the Dog and the Unopenable Door by Ross Montgomery

Edited by chesilbeach

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MY (CONTINUING) YEAR OF JANE AUSTEN

I didn't quite finish my challenge last year, so I'll be finishing it off in 2013, although I may still add some more to it as I go along!

These are the Jane Austen books I will be reading this year:
1. Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen
2. Persuasion by Jane Austen
3. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
4. Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
5. Mansfield Park by Jane Austen
6. Emma by Jane Austen
7. The Watsons by Jane Austen


These are the contemporary novels I will be looking at reading - I may add more to this over the course of the year:
8. Mr Darcy's Diary by Amanda Grange (Pride and Prejudice)
9. Mr Knightley's Diary by Amanda Grange (Emma)
10. Captain Wentworth's Diary by Amanda Grange (Persuasion)
11. Colonel Brandon's Diary by Amanda Grange (Sense and Sensibility)
12. Wickham's Diary by Amanda Grange (Pride and Prejudice)
13. Henry Tilney's Diary by Amanda Grange (Northanger Abbey)
14. Edmund Bertram's Diary by Amanda Grange (Mansfield Park)
15. Death Comes To Pemberley by P. D. James (Pride and Prejudice)
16. The Three Weissmanns of Westport by Cathleen Schine (Sense and Sensibility)
17. An Assembly Such as This by Pamela Aidan (Pride and Prejudice) (recommended by frankie)
18. These Three Remain by Pamela Aidan (Pride and Prejudice) (recommended by frankie)
19. Duty and Desire by Pamela Aidan (Pride and Prejudice) (recommended by frankie)
20. The Missing Manuscript of Jane Austen by Syrie James (present from poppyshake)
21. Austenland by Shannon Hale

This is the biography I would like to read:
21. Jane Austen: A Life by Claire Tomalin

Other miscellaneous books:
22. Letters to Alice: On First Reading Jane Austen by Fay Weldon (recommended by willoyd)

Edited by chesilbeach

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PERSEPHONE BOOKS

 

I love the books from independent publisher Persephone, not just for their beautiful book designs, but also for their ethos and the authors they chose to publish, so much so that I even started a thread just about them! http://www.bookclubforum.co.uk/community/index.php?/topic/9960-persephone-books

 

I've been thinking for a while about reading their entire catalogue of books (currently 100 books, but they publish two more every quarter), and this is the year I'm going to start this in earnest.

 

This is a long term challenge and not expected to be completed within the year.

 

Key:

Books I own in Italics

Books I have read in Bold

 

BOOK LIST:

1. William - an Englishman by Cicely Hamilton

2. Mariana by Monica Dickens

3. Someone at a Distance by Dorothy Whipple

4. Fidelity by Susan Glaspell

5. An Interrupted Life: The Diaries and Letters of Etty Hillesum 1941-43 by Etty Hillesum

6. The Victorian Chaise-longue by Marghanita Laski

7. The Home-Maker by Dorothy Canfield Fisher

8. Good Evening, Mrs Craven: The Wartime Stories of Mollie Panter-Downes by Mollie Panter-Downes

9. Few Eggs and No Oranges by Vere Hodgson

10. Good Things in England by Florence White

11. Julian Grenfell by Nicholas Mosley

12. It's Hard to Be Hip Over Thirty by Judith Viorst

13. Consequences by E. M. Delafield

14. Farewell Leicester Square by Betty Miller

15. Tell It to a Stranger by Elizabeth Berridge

16. Saplings by Noel Streatfeild

17. Marjory Fleming by Oriel Malet

18. Every Eye by Isobel English

19. They Knew Mr Knight by Dorothy Whipple

20. A Woman's Place: 1910-75 by Ruth Adam

21. Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day by Winifred Watson

22. Consider the Years by Virginia Graham

23. Reuben Sachs by Amy Levy

24. Family Roundabout by Richmal Crompton

25. The Montana Stories by Katherine Mansfield

26. Brook Evans by Susan Glaspell

27. The Children who lived in a Barn by Eleanor Graham

28. Little Boy Lost by Marghanita Laski

29. The Making of a Marchioness by Frances Hodgson Burnett

30. Kitchen Essays by Agnes Jekyll

31. A House in the Country by Jocelyn Playfair

32. The Carlyles at Home by Thea Holme

33. The Far Cry by Emma Smith

34. Minnie's Room: The Peacetime Stories of Mollie Panter-Downes by Mollie Panter-Downes

35. Greenery Street by Denis Mackail

36. Lettice Delmer by Susan Miles

37. The Runaway by Elizabeth Anna Hart

38. Cheerful Weather for the Wedding by Julia Strachey

39. Manja by Anna Gmeyner

40. The Priory by Dorothy Whipple

41. Hostages to Fortune by Elizabeth Cambridge

42. The Blank Wall by Elisabeth Sanxay Holding

43. The Wise Virgins by Leonard Woolf

44. Tea with Mr Rochester by Frances Towers

45. Good Food On The Aga by Ambrose Heath

46. Miss Ranskill Comes Home by Barbara Euphan Todd

47. The New House by Lettice Cooper

48. The Casino by Margaret Bonham

49. Bricks and Mortar by Helen Ashton

50. The World that was Ours by Hilda Bernstein

51. Operation Heartbreak by Duff Cooper

52. The Village by Marghanita Laski

53. Lady Rose and Mrs Memmary by Ruferguson

54. They Can't Ration These by Vicomte De Mauduit

55. Flush by Virginia Woolf

56. They Were Sisters by Dorothy Whipple

57. The Hopkins Manuscript by Rc Sherriff

58. Hetty Dorval by Ethel Wilson

59. There Were No Windows by Norah Hoult

60. Doreen by Barbara Noble

61. A London Child of the 1870s by Molly Hughes

62. How To Run Your Home Without Help by Kay Smallshaw

63. Princes in the Land by Joanna Cannan

64. A Woman Novelist and Other Stories by Diana Gardner

65. Alas, Poor Lady by Rachel Ferguson

66. Gardener’s Nightcap by Muriel Stuart

67. The Fortnight in September by Rc Sherriff

68. The Expendable Man by Dorothy B Hughes

69. Journal by Katherine Mansfield

70. Plats du Jour by Patience Gray and Primrose Boyd

71. The Shuttle by Frances Hodgson Burnett

72. House-Bound by Winifred Peck

73. The Young Pretenders by Edith Henrietta

74. The Closed Door and Other Stories by Dorothy Whipple

75. On the Other Side: Letters to my Children from Germany 1940-46 by Mathilde Wolff-Mönckeberg

76. The Crowded Street by Winifred Holtby

77. Daddy's Gone A-Hunting by Penelope Mortimer

78. A Very Great Profession by Nicola Beauman

79. Round about a Pound a Week by Maud Pember Reeves

80. The Country Housewife's Book by Lucy H Yates

81. Miss Buncle's Book by De Stevenson

82. Amours de Voyage by Arthur Hugh Clough

83. Making Conversation by Christine Longford

84. A New System of Domestic Cookery by Mrs Rundell

85. High Wages by Dorothy Whipple

86. To Bed with Grand Music by Marghanita Laski

87. Dimanche and Other Stories by Irène Némirovsky

88. Still Missing by Beth Gutcheon

89. The Mystery of Mrs Blencarrow by Mrs Oliphant

90. The Winds of Heaven by Monica Dickens

91. Miss Buncle Married by D. E. Stevenson

92. Midsummer Night in the Workhouse by Diana Athill

93. The Sack of Bath by Adam Fergusson

94. No Surrender by Constance Maud

95. Greenbanks by Dorothy Whipple

96. Dinners for Beginners by Rachel and Margaret Ryan

97. Harriet by Elizabeth Jenkins

98. A Writer's Diary by Virginia Woolf

99. Patience by John Coates

100. The Persephone Book of Short Stories by Various

Edited by chesilbeach

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J. L. CARR

 

One of my author challenges is to read the entire fiction collection of J. L. Carr, one of my partners favourite writers. I think we already own his novels (some of them, more than one copy as well!), and this is a long term reading plan to be dipped in and out of.

 

This is a long term challenge and not expected to be completed within the year.

 

Key:

Books I have read in Bold

 

1. A Day In Summer

2. A Season in Sinji

3. The Harpole Report

4. How Steeple Sinderby Wanderers Won The F. A. Cup

5. A Month In The Country

6. The Battle of Pollocks Crossing

7. What Hetty Did

8. Harpole and Foxberrow, General Publishers

Edited by chesilbeach

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E. H. YOUNG

 

Another one of my author challenges is to read the books of E. H. Young, and again, another one of my partners favourite writers. I read one of her books many years ago, mostly because after she married in 1902, she married and moved with her husband to Clifton, Bristol, somewhere I too lived for a couple of years, albeit 90 years later, so I was interested to read a novel set in the place I lived at the time. Although we have quite a few of her books, it's by no means the entire collection, but I'm going to start on the ones we have and scour the bookshops and online sellers for the others. First up though, I need to search the bookshelves in the house to find the books we have!

 

This is a long term challenge and not expected to be completed within the year.

 

Key:

Books I own in Italics

Books I have read in Bold

 

1. A Corn of Wheat

2. Younder

3. Moor Fires

4. The Bridge Dividing

5. William

6. The Vicar's Daughter

7. Miss Mole

8. Jenny Wren

9. The Curate's Wife

10. Celia

11. Caravan Island

12. River Holiday

13. Chatterton Square

Edited by chesilbeach

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Wow, Claire

You are amazingly organized ! Looks at those lists,with color coding and the whole 9 yards ! Your reading totals are quite impressive. You've been at a pretty even number for 4 years running . Good job . :)

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Good Luck with your reading challenges for next year Claire. I've only read A Month in The Country by J.L. Carr but it's one of the few books i've hung on to i loved it that much, a real emotional read. I have a few of his other ones on my wishlist so look forward to reading what you think of the rest of his stuff :smile:

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Wow, Claire

You are amazingly organized ! Looks at those lists,with color coding and the whole 9 yards ! Your reading totals are quite impressive. You've been at a pretty even number for 4 years running . Good job . :)

Thanks Julie. :smile2: It does make me chuckle that you mentioned the books read numbers for the previous years - I joined the forum in January 2009, so make of that what you will! :lol:

 

 

Good Luck with your reading challenges for next year Claire. I've only read A Month in The Country by J.L. Carr but it's one of the few books i've hung on to i loved it that much, a real emotional read. I have a few of his other ones on my wishlist so look forward to reading what you think of the rest of his stuff :smile:

Thanks, Kidsmum. :) I'm looking forward to reading them, as my OH loves them so much, and he's a pretty good judge most of the time :D

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Claire

Definitely looks like this place had some influence on your book buying and reading ,to have the totals jump that high for 4 years running . You do tend to get lots of good ideas by reading everyone's reviews and lists .

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Thanks, Kidsmum. :) I'm looking forward to reading them, as my OH loves them so much, and he's a pretty good judge most of the time :D

I'd say he's got really good taste! JL Carr is one of my favourite authors, and I'd list 'A Month in the Country' as my favourite book. I've got a special fondness for 'The Harpole Report' too (also in my top dozen, and one of the very few humorous books I've ever really enjoyed), not least as I'm a primary teacher. His touch is nigh on perfect, not surprising considering he was a primary head himself.

I'd strongly recommend Byron Rogers's biography of JL Carr, The Last Englishman, which, aside from being highly readable (he's another writer worth exploring), gives a real insight into where all the source material for his books comes from, and really highlights what an interesting, highly individual, character he was.

Edited by willoyd

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I really liked A Month in the Country when I read it earlier this year, but haven't looked at any other books by the author; I will look forward to seeing what you think of them chesil :)

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I love it that you are doing different challenges in different years, it keeps it all interesting and it's motivating to have a special agenda. And I envy you for having such focus to concentrate on certain things during certain periods! :)

 

Happy reading in 2013, Claire, maybe you read many, many amazing titles! :friends3:

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Happy reading in 2013! I look forward to reading many reviews :D

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The Persephone books sounds very intriguing, chesilbeach.

I should find out if they are available anywhere here.

 

Wishing you fun with your reading this year :friends3:

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I found the Persephone books interesting too Claire. They have a couple of SF titles I want to check out and many others look interesting in other ways. Annoyingly they don't do paperbacks and the e books are not compatible with kindle though.

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Hey, Claire. Your numbers always amaze me, consistently 130+ for four years is incredible; I've never managed to hit 100 in a single year, but I'll do my best to rectify that in the following twelve months.

 

Anyway, happy reading for 2013, subscribed and look forward to reading your thoughts on everything, hope it's a great year for you. :smile2:

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Hey, Claire. Your numbers always amaze me, consistently 130+ for four years is incredible; I've never managed to hit 100 in a single year, but I'll do my best to rectify that in the following twelve months.

 

Anyway, happy reading for 2013, subscribed and look forward to reading your thoughts on everything, hope it's a great year for you. :smile2:

Thanks Ben, and although I keep a record, the numbers really don't bother me. One day I might make the 150 mark, but I don't really care. 2012 was spectacular for me just for getting that TBR down to zero, but it's starting to creep up again already. I want to keep on top of it, but other than that, it'll just be business as usual, and read whatever I fancy! :D

 

 

Happy reading in 2013, Claire. :)

Thanks Kylie! :smile2:

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My Love Lies Bleeding (Drake Chronicles Book One) by Alyxandra Harvey

 

Synopsis (from amazon.co.uk):

The Drakes are rather different to your usual neighbours. They are vampires and some of the members of the family date back to the twelfth century. One of the children, Solange, is the only born female vampire known and, as such, she poses a direct threat to the vampire queen. Her best friend Lucy is human, and when Solange is kidnapped Lucy and Solange's brother, Nicholas, set out to save her. Lucy soon discovers that she would like to be more than just friends with Nicholas. But how does one go about dating a vampire? Meanwhile, Solange finds an unlikely ally in Kieran, a vampire slayer on the hunt for his father's killer . . .

 

Blood Feud (Drake Chronicles Book Two) by Alyxandra Harvey

 

Synopsis (from amazon.co.uk):

It has been centuries since Isabeau St. Croix survived the French Revolution. Now she's made her way back to the living and must face the ultimate test by confronting the evil British lord who turned her into a vampire and left her buried for two hundred years. That's if she can control her affection for Logan Drake, a vampire whose bite is as sweet as the revenge she seeks . . .

 

Review:

If it hadn't been in the 12 Days of Kindle sale, I don't think I'd have bothered with the first book in the series, but for 99p I thought I'd give it a go. The action starts within the first few pages, and whips along at a decent pace, and I like the dual narrative switching between Lucy and Solange. It was an interesting take on the vampire theme, with vampires who could not only be created but also born human and effecting a change at the age of 16. I liked the Drake family and how their story developed, so much so that I downloaded the second book and started it immediately after finishing the first.

 

The story in this second book switches to one of the Drake brothers and Isabeau, from another vampire faction. We learn more of the history of the vampire society through flashbacks to Isabeau's human life in eighteenth century Paris and London, and another easy but entertaining read.

 

The story is not groundbreaking, but it's an easy and entertaining read, so unless you're already a fan of YA vampire books, you're really not going to be interested in picking these up.

Edited by chesilbeach

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Mr Penumbra's 24-hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan

 

Synopsis (from amazon.co.uk):

Recession has shuffled Clay Jannon out of his life as a San Francisco Web-design drone - and serendipity, coupled with sheer curiosity, has landed him a new job working the night shift at Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore. But after just a few days, Clay begins to realize that this store is even more curious than the name suggests. There are only a few customers, but they come in repeatedly and never seem to actually buy anything, instead they simply borrow impossibly obscure volumes from strange corners of the store, all according to some elaborate, long-standing arrangement with the gnomic Mr. Penumbra. The store must be a front for something larger, Clay concludes, and soon he's embarked on a complex analysis of the customers' behaviour and roped his friends into helping to figure out just what's going on. But once they bring their findings to Mr. Penumbra, it turns out the secrets extend far outside the walls of the bookstore...

 

Review:

This was a good Sunday read. It was nice and easy to follow the story, and had a lot of dialogue which I always feel reads more quickly than description or narration. Clay and his friends use modern computer technology to try and figure out what's happening in the bookstore, and there is a lot of explanation of Google, how and what they do, and the extent of the various developments they are undertaking, plus some other areas including computer languages, models and databases, and for the most part it was successful and believable.

 

Another positive has to be that it's a story about a bookshop, books and readers, so with the added technological elements, what's not to enjoy by someone who virtually lives on an internet book forum?!

 

Now, it wasn't perfect by a long shot. The biggest problem for me was that I didn't connect with the characters, and I always felt apart from Clay himself (who narrates the story in the first person) all the characters seemed very distant and I didn't get to know any of them enough to empathise with them. There's also the problem that despite my comment about the technology, it's bound to date the book almost immediately, as computers and the internet move so fast, within a matter of months this will feel out of date or behind the times.

 

There's also the mystery itself that Clay and his friends try to unravel. I liked the development of it, but all the way through I was worried how it would conclude, as it could have become melodramatic or fantastical, but actually, it almost sort of petered out, and by the end it sort of felt like a bit of a damp squib. There was enough to keep me interested, and some very interesting chapters, and the descriptions of the bookshop make me want to visit it. Not wholly satisfying, but not a bad read for a lazy Sunday.

Edited by chesilbeach

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