Simon’s Bookish Bits #16

Thank goodness it’s Saturday, and I don’t know about you but here it is glorious sunshine so I won’t do a long post as I am sure, like me, you will want to spend most of your day out in it. It’s been a four day week here in the UK and it’s a weird one because I always feel so much more tired after working four days than if I have worked five, why is that? So on with some bookish odds and sods…

My internet has been evil and sporadic this week, so I have no link of the week, but touch wood after a very nice man came and sorted it yesterday it should be back on… I have so many of your blogs to catch up on, so do bear with me and I have been rather busy again this week, it seems like in the build up to Brazil (which is seven months away) I am going into overdrive in order to make sure the Brazil Fund is brimming and I have enough features up my sleeve to keep the magazine happy while I vanish for three months. Sorry you probably don’t really want to know about that haha. To illustrate how busy I have been, I haven’t even managed to get round to opening some of these…

I know shocking isn’t it! Who knows what treats lie in wait for me inside those parcels? I will report back in due course of course (I am opening them tonight when I get back) and let you know. I did get two little belated birthday parcels this week from The Converted One and they arrived thanks to some of your Victorian/deathly recommendations…

‘Falling Angels’ by Tracey Chevalier (who I am appalled I have never read a book written by before) is pretty much set in Highgate, where I will be most of the day today, and is one I am itching to read. The other ‘The Loved One’ is one many of you recommended by Evelyn Waugh who I have wanted to read much more of too so that’s perfect. The Converted One is narked because it’s not the cover that was ordered, I don’t know if you can send a book back on that basis? I collect the art deco covered one’s as you can see from my Brideshead Revisited thoughts last year back in 2008. Yes thats  yet another author I swore I would read more books by and then didn’t which brings me to my Contemporary vs. Classic post.

Thank you to everyone who left thoughtful, helpful and insightful comments I am mulling them all over (as are a few publishers I believe, it wasn’t an anti publisher post because I know someone’s been saying that) and especially big thanks goes to those of you who too the time to give me your wonderful lists of fabulous reading through the decades. I never expected any of you would and those who did I think deserve a special extra thanks. I will be emailing you all. I did say I would do mine and its hard blinking work and I want to get it spot on so you will be seeing those here next week, aren’t I a tease?

Right, I best be off because a busy Saturday of Highgate and the sunshine awaits, I am also meeting the author Natasha Solomons this afternoon for tea and cakes (I believe she has snuck me a goodie bag from the Sceptre event I couldn’t make yesterday too) in a secret hidden café with the most amazing skyline views, mind you in this weather I feel a quintessential picnic of cakes in a park with lashings of ginger beer might be more appropriate! Have a lovely Saturday, let me know what you’re doing etc, and hopefully see you tomorrow for the latest NTTVBG to discuss ‘Skin Lane’ which I have just completely amazed by. What book has blown you away of late?


Filed under Simon's Bookish Bits

28 responses to “Simon’s Bookish Bits #16

  1. 3 months in Brazil sounds amazing! I thought I was lucky having 5 weeks in Cambodia and Vietnam, I need to find a more accomodating job!

    • Ha, I wouldnt say mine was accomodating, I am having to make sure now there is lots of my stuff in the magazines then which is quite hard to predict and is almost double my workload but it will be worth it for the trip , I think its going to be quite special.

  2. I think that it is acceptable to send a title back on the basis that it was the wrong cover advertised; however, I’ve been caught out in the past because it was the same ISBN and the seller was not sympathetic in the least (obviously not a collector of specific editions of books, as we are).

    Please say hi to Natasha Solomons for me; I didn’t have a chance to speak to her yesterday as she had to dash off but I am incredibly excited about reading her book and hope to catch one of her events on her record-breaking tour.

    • I am slightly narked about the state of The Loved One but not because of the cover, I think The Converted One even finding this book and looking through the blog specially is just very thoughtful, but they have put some sort of see through cover on it which is slightly gummy! It’s just a bit weird!

      I didnt get your message till after I saw Natasha, apols. She did tell me all about the bit of the afternoon she managed to get to, sound like it was an interesting afternoon.

  3. I don’t know what I’m still doing indoors, must get out into the sunshine myself!

    Can’t believe your self-control in not tearing those parcels open immediately…

    Oh, and I think I have The Loved One on my shelf, so will be interested to hear what you think. I’m not quite sure with Evelyn Waugh yet – I think he’s a really good writer, but a bit too mean for me…

    • The parcels have well and truly been opened now how no fear of that Simon, I got a little over excited and had to calm down, I have some treats coming up in the next few weeks and months amongst my older reads.

      The Loved One is going to be read today, despite the sticky cover issue and so you should be hearing all about that soon.

  4. Susan in TX

    Well….as one who has been known to shake her Christmas presents under the tree, and engage in otherwise sneaky behavior, I have to say I CANNOT BELIEVE you have so many unopened parcels waiting for you! 🙂 Unless you know what is in some of them, that many surprises might cause me to develop a twitch if I had to ignore them. (Said in good fun, of course.) 🙂
    Enjoy your day, and your miniature Christmas tonight!

    • I once went through all my mothers drawers to find out what I had for christmas and once I did all the suprise was gone, I even listened to one of the CD’s while she was out, it sort of took the magic and suspense away though. I guessed a cuple before the mass opening, but lots of nice and some bizarre suprises.

  5. I’m not sure I’ve ever coveted something as desperately as I do your pile of unopened packages. Mystery! Anticipation! Books!

    Have a wonderful weekend! I’ll be spending mine reading and hopefully enjoying some sun outdoors before the forecasted snow descends. Snow. In April. It’s cruelty beyond measure.

    • Oddly two of them werent even books Claire, I know, I Know its shocking… someone dared to send me the whole of Cold Feet on DVD as a suprise and someone else the latest series of Most Haunted. I was quite pleased as initially I thought they were two parcelled monster tomes.

  6. Oh how I wish I had had a four day week, working at Drayton Manor means five days as bank holiday plus school half-term makes for our busiest time! My lie in this morning felt sooo good but not a long one as the sunshine was peeking through my curtains! Planning to pop out into the garden to read as soon as washing goes on the line and new load goes into washing machine.
    Hope you have a fun day at Highgate in the sun.

    • Ooooh outdoor reading, I have a post coming up about that in the next week. Lol. I hope your time in the garden was delightful. I was apparently being dragged away from the NTTVBG today in order to be taken on a picnic, but its cloudy and a bit colder today… grrrr!

      Highgate in the sunshine is a delight, lots and lots of visitors yesterday and lots and lots of walking up hill which could have done with a breeze, lol.

  7. gaskella

    I’ve just finished ‘Direct Red’ by Gabriel Weston. A surgeon’s tale. It was a brilliant insight into what it’s like to become a junior surgeon and wonderfully written too. Review coming soon.

  8. Oh Simon, I want to be there to rip them all open for you. Enjoy!

    Like you, I have much to catch up on this weekend. My ambitious reading plan for the month is most satisfying but seems to leave little time for blogging. Little makeup work on the way.

    Have a fantastic day with the dead people!

    • Hahahaha thanks Frances I did actually tell people yesterday at the catacombes ‘no photo’s… its dead people’ and I think they thought they were going to see something really awful and didn’t want to go in.

  9. I envy you for your copy of Fallen Angels. I have read and reviewed Tracy Chevalier’s book Remarkable Creatures this year and I loved it. She is likely to become one of my fav authors. I can’t wait to hear your thoughts on the book, should you want to share them with us.

    • I will be starting Falling Angels later today after a few shorter reads before hand, have heard marvellous things and oddly lots of discussion about it at Highgate yesterday. I have read no Chevalier so am looking forward to seeing what sort of writer she is and how I get on with her.

  10. Enjoy your day at Highgate! We are hoping for a lovely day here as well but so far, not so lovely. I have had sad family news today so I may just escape into a book instead. Who knows!

  11. I love receiving packages! How exciting. Enjoy!

  12. What a lovely pile of packages!! I try and time my book orders so I know I will get a package (or maybe even two…ahem) a week, and this is what a glutton for punishment I am–I will sometimes wait until all my after work chores are done so I can open them in peace and spend time looking over the books. And I agree–sometimes short work weeks are even more tiring than regular ones. Have fun opening your packages!

    • Oooh when I am allowed to buy books again I might do it around that timed basis what a good idea. Or I could just ask The Converted One if he would like to send me a few suprises each month. I can actually see the look I would get if I dared hahaha.

  13. Dot

    I think that you will really enjoy Tracy Chevalier, I have read Girl With a Pearl Earring and The Lady and The Unicorn. I haven’t read Falling Angels but I have it on my TBR pile.

  14. OMG! That picture of the parcels really had me drooling! Nice right to get some parcel in the mail? I so love those days!

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