A New Book for a New Year

My family were really taking the mickey out of me over New Years because naturally we were talking about what we had been reading (well when me, my mother, Granny Savidge Reads and The Girl Who Read Too Much get together the conversation will of course descend into all things books) and I said that I was between books because I like to start the new reading year with a nice new read, though of course I have to be picky about what it is. They all looked at me like I had gone mad!

Maybe I am the only person in the world (unlikely) who does this? I just really like the idea that when one year ends that’s my reading palette closed, have a quick breather and then let the new year can bring in lots of new and exciting reads. It’s a habit that I have had for the last five years I think. Is it just me?  I will of course report back on my decision!

Speaking of new books that might delight me in 2011, which is of course now this year which I am also struggling to get my head round, I thought I would share some books I got for Christmas. I am thrilled to add more are coming because of the pesky snow and postal problems, so will report on those when it arrives. I did mainly get vouchers for new flat stuff though, but over to the more exciting things… new books!!

  • Jonathan Livingston Seagull – Richard Bach (from The BookBoy)
  • Witch Week – Diana Wynne Jones (from Nick of A Pile of Leaves)
  • 84 Charing Cross Road – Helene Hanff (from Mr Paul Magrs)
  • The Best of Books and Company edited by Susan Hill (from Mum)
  • A Tiny Bit Marvellous – Dawn French (from Mum)
  • Chocolate Wars – Deborah Cadbury (from Mum)

And to think more are arriving in due course. I am not sure if any of these will make it as my first read of the year, I think that might take a full day of mulling over what is in Mount TBR before I can decide, but these titles are all lovely and one could just do the job. I am beginning to think that whatever read I go for first will shape my reading year ahead and therefore it has to be REALLY good, is that too much pressure for any book?

So what books did you all get for Xmas? Any other lovely things, I seemed to get lots of vouchers for things to live in new flats which is very kind of people. Do any of you start the new year with a new book? I will be discussing New Years Reading Resolutions with you tomorrow, any suggestions, I am struggling for 2011!!

32 Comments

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32 responses to “A New Book for a New Year

  1. I would like to do what you do. But I normally start a new book on the last day of the year (the last few years, I always finish a book at december 31 and start a new one, you could say I should just rearrange my reading so I will be finishing a book at midnight instead of midday). I always end up counting that book towards the new year. It is probably cheating..

  2. My husband did this but he had to start a new book on Christmas day, and it had to be a book that he received as a present. Bonkers I thought LOL

  3. No! You are not mad at all! I took two whole days off reading so that I might start The Children’s Book by A.S. Byatt fresh on the first day of the new year. And am really happy about the decision so far too.

    My family did really bookishly well by me this Christmas. Usually they say they do not want to buy me books but I put my foot down this year and pouted a little until they all caved Beautifully! I have a sidebar full of new books and more on the way.

    And as for your lovely stack, I have always wanted to read 84 Charing Cross Road so I would go in that direction first. Happy reading!

    • Hoorah so it isnt just me that does this! I will have to check you havent repotred your thoughts on The Childrens Book yet, with hospital visits I havent been as quick on the uptake with getting down to reading everyones blogs as much as I would like.

      84 Charing Cross Road was the first one of these that I devoured, so I took your advice on board.

  4. I am exactly the same, I have to end a year on one book and begin a new year with another. I couldn’t begin a book at the end of one year and finish it at the beginning of another. It would feel wrong.

  5. Marina

    I do exactly the same thing! I finished Nancy Mitford’s “The Blessing” on the 30th, and then read short stories on the 31st, so I could start a new book on New Year’s day! And that book has to feel special it can’t be just anyone book from the pile. This year it’s a Brazilian classic: The posthumous memoirs of Bras Cubas by Machado de Assis.

    Happy New Year and Happy reading!

  6. great selection I ve read jonathan seagull and have the same copy of 84 charing cross road to read ,I m still reading 2666, then got hare with amber eyes lined up ,all best stu

  7. Jo

    Good selection of books. I got 84 Charing Cross Roas as
    well. I have read Dawn French – and it was one of the best reads of
    2010 for me. All have been covered on my blog. I also like to start
    something new for New Year as well desipte this year only having a
    few pages to read of Twelve Days of Christmas left to go. Therefore
    I had to stay in bed New Years Day to finish it before I got up and
    thought about a new book.

  8. You are not alone, Simon! A new year is a fresh start in every other way so I apply it to books too & as such have to finish reading my current book on the 31st. This year I also made an attempt to start as I mean to go on -by reading great books that I have been meaning to read- by picking up Never Let Me Go as my first book of 2011.

    I posted about my bookish Christmas gifts today. 84 Charing Cross Road is charming and delightful and was the first book I read after moving to London.

    • I think it is the idea of a new year being fresh and thats why I do this, its amazing seeing how many people feel the same.

      I am looking forward to your thoughts on Never Let Me Go, I had to re-read a lot of it over Xmas in order to get my reading guide done for Faber and was won over by it all over again.

  9. Absolutely normal behaviour as far as I’m concerned! I finished one book around mid-day on New Year’s Eve and couldn’t let myself start another until New Year’s Day, just so I’d have a new book for the new year. I’ve started off 2011 with The Blitz by Juliet Gardiner and am definitely pleased with my choice!

    A lovely stack of new books! 84 Charing Cross Road is a favourite of mine and I’ve been coveting Chocolate Wars since it came out. My brother’s girlfriend got a copy of it for Christmas so hopefully she’ll let me borrow it once she’s done.

    • I havent heard of The Blitz, I shall have to have a gander at it on Amazon and pop and see your thoughts too!

      I think Chocolate Wars is one that I will have to turn to very soon! Though I am wondering if I will be left wanting to eat masses of chocolate as I am reading it which might not be such a good thing.

  10. It has worked out, for the past 8-9 years that I’ve kept lists of my reading, that I finished my last book ahead of NYE, and started a new book in the first week of the new year. I don’t think I do it consciously, but I do think that whatever you’re reading in the beginning of the year (usually) sets the tone of reading for the rest of the year.

    • Forgot to add…

      84, Charing Cross Road is delightful. I read it last year (as in, 2 months ago) and it’s a light, fun book. I think you will enjoy it. I have not read any of the others in your stack, though I think I would like to read Chocolate Wars. I look forward to your thoughts on it.

      • Thanks M! I don’t think it started out as a concious reading habit but it has definitley become one. I like the idea of each reading year being a new leaf and that you start a fresh, it does mean I put a little bit of pressure on whatever I read first though.

  11. Great bookish gifts! I hope that you enjoy them all. I got some wonderful books as well (some Feminist Classics for the project were especially exciting!) and I can’t wait to read one.

  12. Actually, I did start a new book this new year – well, not exactly ON the new year. I started it a few days after Christmas but was so busy I really didn’t get into it until New Year’s Day. Does that count? Wait for Me! A delicious read about the Duchess of Devonshire that I was gifted.

    84 Charing Cross Road is one of my favorite reads, and have read it again and again. Chocolate Wars – ah, just the mention had me eating a bit of chocolate before commenting. Jonathan Livingston Seagull takes me back to college days (and now I’ve gone and dated myself as I was in college when first it came out). The Best of Books and Company caught my eye there on your ample list. hmm

    After Devonshire, it is Gilead for me. Happy New Year.

    • Ooooh I am dipping in and out of Debo The Duchess of Devonshire at the moment. I simply cant read it in one go, though I do want to, because I need to make the pleasure last as long as is possible.

      The Best of Books and Company is one I will be dipping in and out of after I have finished dipping in and out of Debo.

      Gilead… interesting. I shall say no more!

  13. novelinsights

    I don’t think that’s mad at all. I felt a little grumpy that I hadn’t finished Jane Eyre by the end of 2010 but then decided not to worry too much. I had some lovely book-gifts from my step-sisters (I’m very tempted by The Yacoubian Building at the moment) and vouchers too so I’ll be going shopping for some more treasures in due course!

    I seem to remember that my mum had Jonathan Livingston Seagull and that it was a very charming little book.

  14. Out of your list I have only read 84, Charing Cross Road which was a real bonus for me. I loved the book.
    I did not stop reading at all as I was being greedy and wanting to finish as many books as possible before I leave Melbourne (tonight). Reading till I leave the house actually!!!

  15. Pingback: Spotlight on the Wordpress.Com Book Bloggers! « Randomize ME

  16. I don’t know of anyone who has your New Year, New Book rule, but I do like it! I might adopt it myself next year (thought about it this year, then found myself in the middle of 5 books…)

    Do let us know what you think of 84 Charing Cross Road, it’s in my virtual TBR!

    And what a lovely bunch of books to receive as presents!

    • I am always most jealous of people who can multyi-read Yvann. I simply cant do it, unless I have one fiction book and a non fiction book I can dip in and out of at choice moments.

      They are a lovely bunch of books, and evry diverse which pleases me muchly.

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