Following on from yesterday’s post about reading at leisure and just going off at a tangent I was mulling through my shelves and spotted one that has been getting no attention since I moved into my new house. Now I am a big fan of seeing other people’s shelves on their blogs, for example Claire of Paperback Reader has done a series of colour co-ordinated shelves which looked stunning. I tried this back in February and though it looked lovely I couldn’t ever find anything and so that became a bit of a nightmare, if an aesthetically pleasing on, I know it works wonderfully well for a lot of people though.
When I moved house back in July I inherited lots of new shelves in my room as well as the shelves “for books I have read” in the lounge. The question was how to organise them so I did a hardback shelf, a review paperback shelf, a non fiction shelf, a mixture shelf (books by Daphne, Man Booker winners and dare I say it books I haven’t finished), a short reads shelf and the shelf of today’s post The Blinking Big Books shelf.
Now some of the titles have been must reads for ages and I think one or two of them may end up in my packing for my long weekend up north that’s coming up. The ones I have heard lots about and am looking forward to reading are…
- Small Island – Andrea Levy (on of my Gran’s fav’s)
- A Widow for One Year – John Irving
- The Little Friend – Donna Tartt
- The Mysteries of Udolpho – Ann Radcliffe
- Birdsong – Sebastian Faulks
- Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy
- Alias Grace – Margaret Atwood
- The Poisonwood Bible – Barbara Kingsolver (another of Gran’s favourites)
- The American Boy – Andrew Taylor
- Beyond Black – Hilary Mantel
- Crime & Punishment – Dostoevsky
The ones I am not so sure about which have either been bought for me, sent to me or randomly purchased in shops ‘because they look nice’ (and could do with your thought on, though do give them on the ones above too) are…
- Of Human Bondage – W Somerset Maugham
- At Swim Two Boys – Jamie O’Neil
- The Impressionist – Hari Kunzru (one my Mum very much liked)
- Special Topics in Calamity Physics – Marissa Pessl
- The Forsythe Saga – John Galsworthy
- Rebecca’s Tale – Sally Beauman (a Rebecca sequel/prequel)
- The Historian – Elizabeth Kostova
- The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters – G. W. Dahlquist
- The Madness of a Seduced Woman – Susan Fromberg Schaeffer
- The Grave Diggers Daughter – Joyce Carol Oates
There are a few more (such as the book We Need To Talk About Kevin that I may try and re-read after failing miserably) but that’s quite enough for now. I would just like your thoughts on them especially as I always find really long books quite hard work. I don’t know why this is, one possible explanation is the fact I think about how many shorter books I could be reading. Or the fact they are a bit of nightmare to carry around with you when you are commuting, though I won’t be for quite a while so that’s another excuse down. It could of course just be I am reading the wrong ones?
What are your thoughts on great big books? Which have been your favourites? Do you avoid them at all costs? Do I have any gems above that I simply must read now? Anything big bookish to add?