Wednesday, October 31, 2012

An October Reading Wrap-up and some Spooktacular Books

What I read in October:  October was a terrible month for reading.  I only completed three books.  I usually at least read five a month and normally I'm reading heavily during the cool, Autumn months.  I think I can chalk this up to a sick kiddo, a big party for the kiddos, painting bedrooms, hauling off garbage and donations, and all other manner of incredibly useful but not conducive to reading activities.  In October I finished Tooth and Claw by Jo Walton; this was book about dragons with their own Victorian-like society and it was heavily influenced by Anthony Trollope's Framley ParsonageMrs. Robinson's Disgrace: The Private Diary of a Victorian Lady by Kate Summerscale was a non-fiction book concerning a Victorian woman's diary that seems to tell of a tawdry sexual affair.  While interesting, Mrs. Robinson's Disgrace seemed to barely dance upon a feminist perspective of marriage, law, sexuality, and creativity.  I either wanted the book to be more exciting or "novel-like" or really plum the depths of women in Victorian society.  The last book was my re-read of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by JK Rowling.  As always, it was delightful. 

All Hallow's Read Swap:  My All Hallow's Read Swap came in last week!  I received a book of Edwardian and Victorian Gothic tales (yay!) and an adorable little wind-up Dracula!  Thanks Alexandra (aka  She sent it all the way from Brussels.  I feel so special.  I mailed mine on Friday (I know, cutting it close).  I hope it has arrived.

Library Book Sale:  In other exciting news, I broke my book-buying ban!  I haven't bought any books since May 30th.  I spent $26 for 25 books.  Behold!

Three Men in a Boat by Jerome K. Jerome
Ripley's Game by Patricia Highsmith
Birdsong by Sebastian Faulks
The Magicians by Lev Grossman
The Prestige by Christopher Priest
The Blunderer by Patricia Highsmith
The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith
Pope Joan by Donna Woolfolk Cross
In Hazard by Richard Hughes
Anasi Boys by Neil Gaiman
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
The King's Grace by Anne Easter Smith
The Pale Blue Eye by Louis Bayard
The Long Ships by Frans G. Bengtsson (NYRB)
A House and Its Head by Ivy Compton Burnett (NYRB)
Fatale by Jean-Patrick Manchette (NYRB)
Wish her Safe at Home by Stephen Benatar (NYRB)
The Wives of Henry the Eighth by Antonia Fraser
Katherine by Anya Seton
The Haunted Hotel by Wilkie Collins
Father Melancholy's Daughter by Gail Godwin
Ghostwalk by Rebecca Stott
The Selected Stories of Patricia Highsmith
I, Elizabeth
by Rosalind Miles
The Memoirs of Cleopatra by Margaret George
Fingersmith by Sarah Waters

Whew!  An excellent haul!

Goals for November:  I'm motivated by my recent purchases and things seem to be settling down at home into a normal and cozy fall routine.  I'm ready to kick my reading up a notch in November; after all, I still need to complete 13 books to reach my goal of reading 50 books this year.

On the docket for November:

Finish up The Haunted Dolls' House and Other Ghost Stories by MR James
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
The Wars of the Roses
by Alison Weir
Agnes Grey by Anne Bronte
The Mist in the Mirror by Susan Hill
84, Charing Cross Road by Helen Hanff

Cheers to blustery days indoors with a homemade decaf pumpkin spice latte, a quilt, and stack of books!


picky said...

Excellent, excellent haul! Fingersmith is a favorite of mine, and I first read Patricia Highsmith this summer and really enjoyed her.

Hope you get in some great reading in November!

Alex (The Sleepless Reader) said...

Glad you liked it and that it arrived just on time! Enjoy!

Ana @ things mean a lot said...

I love the little Dracula, and the book sounds excellent too!

RE: Mrs Robinson's Disgrace, I enjoyed it but felt much the same way. I understand the kind of neutrality Summerscale was going for, but I guess my expectations of non-fiction are different.

Anonymous said...

Zombies arrived today! And PEZ, which totally made me laugh as I sent my swap buddy the bat PEZ. Obviously, we have awesome taste. :-D
Thanks for the goodies... I'm looking forward the zombies! They'll fit right in with all of the other monsters I've been reading about lately.
Have a lovely November and good luck with those reading goals.

Amanda said...

@Picky, Thanks! I'm eager to be readerly this November

@Alex, thank you so so so much!

@Ana, I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks this way.

@Softdrink, Wonderful! I'm so glad everything made it safe and sound (even if it was a day late).