Hello lovely readers! Welcome to autumn, a time bloggers are traditionally obsessed with. Is it because they love the reminder that one day, like the leaves, we will all wither and die?
The Break by Marian Keyes
I read this over the course of a long weekend in Romania and it is SUCH a good holiday book. There was a brilliant voice, the characters were incredibly compelling and vivid and it was page-turny and fun.
While there was much about this book to love, the plot arc could have been more satisfying. Events tended to come out of nowhere rather than build organically. But I loved the issues that were raised – the misogyny that still faces women today, and what there is to be done.
Year One by Nora Roberts
This was a TERRIBLE choice of book to start during flu season! A horrendous virus has wiped out most of the world’s population, and for some reason this has meant that there is now magic. A plucky band of survivors must work to rebuild the world, and stand against the new dark forces rising.
I am really enjoying this, because I like both urban fantasy and post-apocalyptic fiction. Fellow fans will like it too, but it’s not the book I’d recommend for people new to either genre – the action can feel a little choppy and the dialogue is weak in places. This book will come out on December the 5th.
One last note in the reading category – I am now the proud owner of a BODLIAN READERS CARD, guys. I had to promise not to kindle a fire within the library or hurt a book. It was ace. I’m going this afternoon to READ ALL THEIR BOOKS.
This month’s big big news is that some news about Dialogue Books has been announced in the Bookseller, including the first round of acquisitions, including MY DEBUT NOVEL. It’s getting more real! Also – look at the other books they’ve acquired! They look brilliant, and I’m so excited to be a part of this.
September was spent largely editing the book. With a real editor!! It’s all incredibly exciting, though as you would expect, I’m feeling quite a lot of imposter syndrome at the moment. I can’t WAIT until next year. After working alone on it for so long, it’s a very nourishing idea that people are actually going to read it at last.
I also had a couple of days of attending and reading at writing events, which was so much fun! I went to the Oxford launch of James Webster’s Heroine Chic (where I did a short set), performed at Blackwell’s Oxford’s Poetry Day Fiesta, and attended the Lush Book Club, which this month was featuring Kiran Millwood Hargrave.
I tried to vlog these couple of days, but it turns out vlogging is very difficult. You have to remember to keep explaining what’s going on, and as a lot of your time is spent with other people, or wandering around, it makes you feel like a prat. Also, a day that’s worth vlogging is busy, isn’t it? And thus you might not have time to be messing about on your phone. Maybe not the art form for me.
Bloody politics is much the same as it has been. There is still lingering unease about nuclear war. There have been more terrorist attacks. Environmental disasters continue – there is a catastrophe in Puerto Rico that has a dizzying death count and so little seems to be done. Everything feels like it’s falling apart and bad news just comes and comes and comes and comes. In the one bright spot, it’s Conservative Party conference at the moment, and they seem to be falling apart as well, so that is something.
I really get the feeling no one knows what to do about anything at the moment.
This has been a nice month of pottering along. A lot of telly and hibernating. Maybe a little too much hibernating – I haven’t seen my friends enough, and I’ve felt a bit dislocated and weird as a result. It is of course inevitable that as you get older you scatter, have kids, get more demanding jobs etc, so you’re not going to spend the same huge expanses of time with your friends. It’s not like I WANT to spend 7 long afternoons per week on a stained sofa watching daytime tv with a collected works of Shakespeare on my lap. But I do miss having my very best friends around me at all times.
We went to Romania for a weekend for a friend’s wedding! It was amazing, and so lovely to see another culture’s traditions around marriage. They had crowns in the ceremony, to symbolise becoming the king and queen of their family. There was also an incredibly fun bit in the reception where the bride gets kidnapped and the groom has to perform a forfeit to win her back – amazing! (He did win her back.)
We went to a Nice Cave gig. It was great. Have a photo.
I have been doing a lot of yoga over the last couple of months and it’s been really great. I’m volunteering at a local yoga studio, so I get two free classes a week in exchange for cleaning the mats, mopping up etc. It’s a big time commitment but it makes me feel a lot clearer.
Though on the flip side I have recently got a fitbit and it informed me I have been burning more calories on the cycle to the yoga studio than at actual yoga, so that was disappointing.
That’s it! Do leave a comment about what you’ve been unto this month. Have you also been disappointed by your yoga calorie burn? Do you have a book recommendation for me? Let me know!