New Books - Fiction


I have a doctoral dissertation to write, and the due date looms ever closer.
To calm my nerves I have decided to read some novels, which have absolutely nothing to do with my thesis. That's the spirit, Walter! I've always really excelled at avoidance tactics. Anyhoo, here are the novels I have purchased for May. From the top:

The Beauty of Humanity Movement by Camilla Gibb - A new-ish book set in Vietnam, I knew I had to get this one the moment I read about it.

Where Angels Fear to Tread by E. M. Forster - Having finished the wonderful new Forster biography by Wendy Moffat I have had a passion for reading all of his novels. I will start here.

Married Lovers by Jackie Collins - I recently saw Jackie Collins judging on Season Two of RuPaul's Drag Race, and she was so campy and such a great sport. I read all of Jackie's novels when I was 11 (inappropriate, I know) and they have almost certainly shaped my worldview. Thing is, I haven't read one since then, so I thought I'd revisit my glamorous childhood.

Sprout by Dale Peck - Peck is such a wonderfully cantankerous creature that I thought I might actually read one of his books to see if he has a right to be so contrary.

Fine Just the Way it Is by Annie Proulx - Proulx is the ultimate stylist, and I love her fiction completely. This is one I haven't read.

The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone by Tennessee Williams - My Williams obsession continues.

Love, Etc. by Julian Barnes - Barnes is one of my more recent obsessions, and because I haven't yet bought his new collection of stories, I thought I'd read these.

The Page Turner by David Leavitt - Leavitt is another I have followed since I was a youngster (I read The Lost Language of Cranes when I was in high school). I admire his peculiar fiction, and think he is one of the most fascinating, and underrated, writers alive.

No Dominion by Charlie Huston - When I was working at Hachette Charlie's crypto-queer vampire detective books were a great favourite among the staff and I developed a taste for him. Wonderfully escapist stuff.

Our Kind of Traitor by John Le Carre - An elegant, old-fashioned kind of writer, Le Carre is one of my pantheon of greats. Pure class.

The Help by Kathryn Stockett - This has been huge in the States, though I don't know if it's been all that notable here. I was kind of ignoring it, but then I was listening to the New York Times Book Review podcast and they mentioned some legal problems faced by the author, and in describing the book they made it sound kind of intriguing.

Mary Ann in Autumn by Armistead Maupin - Armistead was here in Sydney for the Mardi Gras, and I took my dear old dad along to hear him speak at the Opera House. He was charming and he reminded me of how much I used to love his books. My dear friend and publisher, Maggie Hamilton, had also read it recently, and she raved about it.

Love and Summer by William Trevor - Dear old William Trevor. Surely he is almost the perfect writer? I want to be him.

Burn Bright by Marianne De Pierres - I got this one signed when Marianne made an appearance at Galaxy bookshop. She is a fabulous author of sci-fi and has an international reputation as one of the best. She won an Aurealis award last week, too, so I need to read this one soon.

The Spruiker's Tale by Catherine Rey - Catherine is part of my research group at university, and to say that she is a brilliant woman is understating things. I have yet to read one of her books, so I am starting with this one. She is French and fabulous, and I know I am going to enjoy it.

The Father Brown Stories by G. K. Chesterton - I read the Father Brown Stories years ago when I was spending an extended period in Vietnam, and they made perfect reading at the time. I found this Folio Society edition at a second hand bookshop, and I had to get it.

1 comments:

P.M.Newton said...

I'd add Jilly Cooper's Riders to your dissertation avoidance Collins nostalgia trip. Great unabashed ridiculous fun, with horses.

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