So, I’m nothing if not a slow reader. I don’t know why that is, or whether it’s a good thing or a bad thing. It’s certainly frustrating, as there are so many books I’d like to get through and really not enough time. That’s why I thought I’d set myself the challenge of reading as many novels as possible over the summer. This is my current list, but I’m always open to new recommendations:
Elena Ferrente – My Brilliant Friend – I’m half way through this at the moment and loving it. I have a personal rule that if something’s not originally in English I should buy the Polish translation to practice my language skills, and I’m finding this accessible and an absolute pleasure to read. There’s something about Ferrente’s style which is at once fresh and immediate, and which brings you up close to the – often – brutal events she’s describing. If, of course, she is a she because…well, no one knows who she really is.
Ali Smith – The Artful – Smith is probably my favourite author, and How to be Both is probably my favourite book. I really enjoyed Boy meets Girl as well – an absolute treasure. Looking forward to exploring more of her lyrical, explosive prose.
Rob May – Girl Under the Gun 2 + 3 – enjoyed the action and thrills of the first part when I read it on Wattpad and I decided to read the rest of the series this summer. I love the way the author creates great women’s characters and combines suspense with humour. Rob May’s books are available on Amazon: http://www.amazon.co.uk/-/e/B00ANVEQWY
@RainAaren (Desiree Stinson) on Wattpad – The Wolf of Estare – great, great lesbian fantasy fiction from a wonderful new writer. This is part of an ongoing story on the site and is available here: https://www.wattpad.com/story/70406411-the-wolf-of-estare-ascension
@WyldPatienz (Rebecca Hill) – The TwiceBorn – it’s another Wattpad tale – a dark fantasy with lesbian main characters. Beautifully written and compelling. It’s available here: https://www.wattpad.com/story/6141628-the-twiceborn
Emma Donoghue – Room – So far I’ve only read Slammerkin by Donoghue, which was as perfect a work of historical fiction as any I’ve come across. Anyway, as Room appears to be her most popular work to date and has recently been turned into a film, I thought I’d give it a go.
Ian Mcewan – Sweet Tooth – There’s something about Mcewan’s capacity for empathy and his nuanced fiction that I love. That and the fact that he is a master of twists. And I’ve been assured this book contains one of the biggest, so, yeah, definitely on the list.
Yaa Gyasi – Homegoing – Read an article on this in Time magazine, and just decided I have to read it. The daughter of Ghanaian emigrants to the US, Gyasi’s novel covers the legacy of slavery from its origins to the present day. Gyasi is only 26 years old and has already received a seven figure advance for her first book.
Andrew Michael Hurley – The Loney – It promises mystery, it promises suspense, Stephen King loved it and its picked up a plethora of prizes including the Costa Novel award. Got to be worth a try.
David Mitchell – The Bone Clocks – I’m a huge fan of Mitchell and the way he works so effortlessly with some of the most complex narrative structures I’ve ever read. Loved Cloud Atlas, positively drooled over Ghostwritten. And my sister bought me the real feel copy of this one so I’m itching to get into it.
Anthony Doerr – All the Light we Cannot See – I’ve heard adjectives like intricate and lyrical used to describe Doerr’s narrative and prose respectively: a story which focuses on the lives of two children caught up in the trauma of the second world war.
Anyway, that’s my list for now. I’m sure it will get longer. If you’ve read any of these books or would like to offer me some other recommendations, drop me a line. Kate X