Happy Saturday (oh, those magic words – I love them)! I’ve managed to get more writing done this week than I had imagined I would – being unwell threw my plans in a loop for a few days – but I’m midway through chapter 13 of my own work, and my characters are just entering the final act of the story. It’s nailbiting stuff. However, I have a feeling that a day spent away from me will do my characters the world of good.
So, I then decided today’s a day for catching up on my reading, and I thought I’d write a few lines about my current ‘to be read’ shortlist. I say ‘shortlist’ because – in truth – I have probably 40 books waiting to be read, but I can’t get my head around a number like that. So, I pretend I only have 2 or 3, in order to make it more manageable. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t – it’s hard to pretend you don’t have a pile of books to be read when they’re scattered all over your house, laughing at you.
This weekend, in any case, the books I’m devouring are:
‘The Wrath of Angels’ (John Connolly):
This is the latest in his dark, supernatural and extremely thrilling detective series, which are largely narrated by the brooding protagonist, Charlie Parker. To be honest, I love these books despite Charlie Parker – I’m really not too fond of him as a character, and I sometimes wonder if that is Connolly’s intention. There’s a wonderful cast of supporting players though, including the blackly comic duo of Angel and Louis, Parker’s ‘right hand men’, and the setting for the stories is invariably Maine, which is always described beautifully. Between Connolly and Stephen King, though, I really don’t ever want to go to Maine.
This book (because I cheated and I’ve started it already) is concerned with a plane which crashed in a forest, and has managed to go unnoticed until two local hunters stumble across the wreckage. They find things in the destroyed fuselage that haunt them to their dying days, and after their deaths, their families call in Charlie to sort out the mystery. Like all the series, it’s gruesome, terrifying, poetically written and compelling. I’ve been a fan of John Connolly since a friend of mine recommended him to me several years ago; I read all the Charlie Parker books that were then available, and I’ve been following the series ever since. Please note: the first book in the series, ‘Every Dead Thing’, is almost unimaginably good. But it’s so frightening that I couldn’t sleep without all the lights on for about a week. Just giving you fair warning. Then, this is coming from a person who couldn’t sleep after watching the movie ‘The Woman in Black’, so… you might want to take it with a pinch of salt.
I’m also going to read (and, hopefully, savour) the debut novel by Eowyn Ivey, titled ‘The Snow Child’:
I’d like to say that I was drawn to this book just on the power of the author’s name alone (which I love – Eowyn is probably my favourite fictional heroine of all time), but actually it was an article about this book which I read in a bookselling trade magazine, several months in advance of its publication, which got my heart pumping for this one. Based on a Russian fairytale wherein a childless couple create a daughter for themselves out of snow, and wait for her to come to life, it sounded incredible. I’m always a sucker for anything even remotely fairytale-related, so I can’t wait to get stuck into this one.
I hope, whatever you’re doing today, that it will involve reading (or, even better, writing), and that you have a wonderful day. Let me know what you’re reading – I’m constantly on the lookout for recommendations! Thanks for visiting me.