Monday, April 13, 2009

Books I'm reading

Are you interested?  Well some of you might be, so here's a selection of what I've been reading recently.

The Ascent of Money (Niall Fergusson) - starts well enough; couldn't wait for it to zzzz.... Way too much unexplained jargon especially in the last two chapters, which felt like they were rushed out and his editor was frightened to amend them. And aren't you, like me,  just so bored with the credit crunch?

Feet in the Clouds (Richard Asquith) - I loved this book 'about fell running and obsession'. Part diary, part memoir, part history of fell running, part journey of discovery. Whether you like fell running is irrelevant - my favoutite book so far this year

Voices of the Children (George Ewart Evans) A story of a childhood in the South Wales Valleys between the wars.  Beautifully written and observed.  One of the few books I've read with a genuine attempt at a child's voice.  One of the excellent Library of Wales series.

What I Talk About When I Talk About Running (Haruki Murakami)  Not a lot it seems!

The Alone to the Alone (Gwyn Thomas) A satire on the depression as experienced in South Wales - very funny in parts, if a bit repetitive.  'One of the most important things about love, said my best friend Walter, is that it keeps people warm... that's more important than love as a means to breeding for a man who hasn't got the means to go filling his outhouse with coal.
Another Library of Wales book.

Smile Please (Jean Rhys) I love the books of Jean Rhys so was keen to read her unfinished autobiography.  It turns out to be a bit thin - especially as it finishes when she is in her teens. The most interesting bit is the 'first draft' notes about her life in Paris which are included as an appendix , though I suspect there is much left unsaid...

Travels with the Flea (Jim Perrin) A collection of high quality travel writing from one of the best outdoor writers and essayists.   I especially liked Travels with a Harley. 

White Tiger (Aravind Adiga)  Great page turner, but the Booker Prize Winner?  

Wide Trails to Far Horizons (Mike Cudahey) I seldom re-read books, but after finishing Feet in the Clouds I dug out a copy that had sat on my bookshelves for twenty years (who said keeping old books is pointless) Mike Cudahey was the first person to run the Pennine Way in under three days - I still find it astonishing.

The Sacred Mountain (Pete Boardman) An ABE Books special; out of print for years - finally tracked down a copy.  Good old fashioned expedition writing - actually its better than that, but a bit faded now.  

Bread Matters (Andrew Whitley) If I could have any job just for the fun of it, I think I'd be a baker. Andrew Whitley is the founder of the fabulous Village Bakery in Melmerby, so he has demi-god status in my eyes.  A book for bread lovers, like me.

The Logic of Life  (Tim Harford)  Not as good as his previous book, The Undercover Economist, but some interesting perspectives on rational behaviour.  I liked the sections on is divorce overrated? and why your boss is overpaid?  

Essays (George Orwell) I'm always reading this book, again and again...   Anyone who can write an essay titled, 'Some thoughts on the common toad' has to be brilliant - but then Orwell was just that.  I read his diaries that are blogged each day too at the Orwell Prize

What have you been reading - apart form this blog of course?  I'd like to know.

No comments:

Post a Comment