March reading round up

I am so far ahead in my reading challenge this year! 23 books and counting. My knitting has lapsed to make room for it. And there were some absolute crackers this month.

See What I Have Done – Sarah Schmidt

I will post a proper review for this once it’s published but in the meantime, pre-order it because it’s excellent.

How to Measure a Cow – Margaret Forster

I like Margaret Forster but as a novelist she did seem to blow hot and cold. This is a cold, I’m afraid. It’s got an interesting premise but she never followed through on the bit that would have held my attention the most.

A Life Between Us – Louise Walters

The second book from Louise Walters, following her enjoyable debut Mrs Sinclair’s Suitcase. I have reviewed this elsewhere on the blog so you can read more here.

Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche – Dear Ijeawele

Bought to celebrate International Womens’ Day earlier in the month, this is a series of lessons in how to bring up a girl in this world. This is fifteen suggestions on how to view the world and to bring your daughters up to be brave and bold. Written to answer a friend who asked for advice, Adiche has a range of things to say that really resonated with me as a woman and as the mum of a girl.

After Julius – Elizabeth Jane Howard

The reading group suggestion this month, and an odd read. I love Howard’s work and this is very dense in places but wonderfully structured. I couldn’t decide if I liked any of the characters completely, they were so believably flawed – callous and sympathetic, hopeless and kind. Howard always covers darker aspects of stories than you expect for a novelist of her time, especially when it comes to matters of sex, but this renders her a strong clear voice of how far we can go to hurt each other.

The Wild Air – Rebecca Mascull

Another book that I will review on publication later this month. Beautiful cover, fascinating story. Watch this space.

Dadland – Keggie Carew

My non-fiction choice this month was a bit hard-going so it’s been read on and off all month. It’s not actually hard to read not is it too harrowing despite the subject matter but for some reason I struggled with it. Anyway, Dadland is Keggie Carew’s attempt to understand and explore her father’s life as he descends into dementia and starts to lose his memory. In part tribute, in part history, Tom Carew led a fascinating life – war guerrilla for the British in France and Burma, thrice married, businessman, friend to Patricia Highsmith, the list goes on. Keggie researches all this and intersperses the history with personal anecdotes of growing up with Tom, and looking after him as he grows less capable. Despite finding this a long read, it’s a rewarding one.

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