Literary Acquisitions: September & October

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Physical Additions:

Yesterday, while traversing the town in which I live (which I don’t do very often) my friend and I found a wonderful little café. Nestled amongst the sofas was a bookshelf where you could read, borrow or buy books; all donations went to charity, how can I turn down an opportunity like that!?

Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë – I have read Wuthering Heights before, one Christmas day a couple of years ago. As one of my favourite books I couldn’t pass up the chance of having a physical copy of it.

Forgotten Voices of the Great War by Max Arthur – I have a bit of a fascination with WW1 – especially after reading Parade’s End – so I picked this up without thinking about it. “In 1972 a team of academics and archivists from the Imperial War Museum set about the monumental task of tracing ordinary men and women who had lived through one of the most harrowing periods of modern history, The First World War. Veterans from Britain, Germany, America, Australia and Canada were interviewed in detail about their day-to-day experiences on and off the front.”

Aside from that I have been shopping at the great beast, Amazon. Not everyone’s favourite book buying location, but when you are limited on funds it’s the easiest place to go.

The Patrick Melrose series by Edward St Aubyn – I bought the first book, Never Mind, on my Kindle to see cheaply gage interest – I finished it in two days. Naturally I immediately had to buy the series and I’m fairly certain this will be up there in my favourites with Parade’s End by its completion. The novels – Never Mind, at least – have the same sort of writing style as my Lost Generation favourites. St Aubyn has a talent of being able to write a story where a great deal happens mentally; he is not reliant on a busy plot.

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Kindle Additions:

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn – at 99p I thought this was a bargain, however, I may be one of the few people who didn’t think much of it.

Kill Your Friends by John Niven – Purchased after my enjoyment of Straight White Male.

The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Brontë – I’ve read both Charlotte and Emily’s (most famous) work, I feel it only right that I read a book by Anne. Oh, and it’s free.

Agnes Grey by Anne Brontë  – As above.

Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen – It was free and I do need to read all of Austen’s novels, not just Persuasion, Pride and Prejudice and Sense and Sensibility. I’ve been told it’s utter meta as well, so I want to read it for that.

The Mysteries of Udolpho – Free and referenced in Northanger Abbey.

Confessions of a Sociopath by M. E. Thomas – Out of curiosity – and from a rather interesting review – I decided to buy this book. It reminded me of reading The Psychopath Test by Jon Ronson, although I imagine the two will be decidedly different.

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What are your latest acquisitions?

14 thoughts on “Literary Acquisitions: September & October

  1. I find it kind of scary how it’s easy to read Charlotte and Emily and think ‘done!’ I’d be interested in hearing your thoughts on Anne’s work; I’ve not yet got to it myself. Beyond what Catherine Morland says it sounds, Udolpho sounds very worth while. And yay for Wuthering Heights, a very good idea to get that, all said. (I can’t pretend to know of St. Aubyn or Max Arthur, but will keep what you’ve said about Gone Girl in mind.)

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    1. I can’t recommend Edward St Aubyn enough!

      I think I am going to find Anne difficult, but maybe feeling that way it will exceed expectations. I agree, it is so easy to forget about Anne, she just didn’t have the punchy attraction of Emily or Charlotte.

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  2. The cafe sounds like a wonderful find! And the World War I voices does as well — it’s an odd war, that one. It’s interesting to me for the same reasons as WWII, all the changes in the societies at the time with women’s suffrage and the declining aristocracy and so forth. But with none of the moral clarity.

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    1. WW1 is so far outside of what I know, it’s like another world of experience. It also has the lack of flights and bombing so it’s a totally different war to WWII, not to mention the different in politics, and the women’s movement…. so many interesting aspects to delve into and study.

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  3. I ended up chatting with Max Arthur in a bar in London one night earlier this year. Never read any of his books, though, despite my drunken resolution to do so – will be interesting to hear what you make of it!

    My recent acquisitions are all for Kindle, unfortunately. I am living abroad and plan to move again fairly soon, so don’t want to accumulate physical books. I bought Everything Flows by Vasily Grossman, and also a couple of books by fellow authors for my publisher Legend Press – Letters from Yelena by Guy Mankowski and A Map of Nowhere by Martin Bannister.

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    1. Really? Ha! That’s awesome 🙂 I’m feeling a little trepidation at beginning it, I feel like it’s something I’ll need to dip in and out of to avoid getting to emotional. It needs my full attention – hard to do that through teary vision.

      Nought wrong with kindle acquisitions, like you said saving space is imperative. I’ve not heard of any of those books, but it will be interesting to see what you make of them nonetheless.

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  4. I wish we had cafes like that over here! We need more cafes with bookshelves and books that you can actually buy/borrow, and this one goes the extra mile by giving all money to charity. Anyway, yay for GONE GIRL! I’ve heard a lot about that book, so I hope you enjoy it lots. I haven’t heard of the rest — not even of that Jane Austen book — but I hope you like them all the same. KILL YOUR FRIENDS sounds particularly interesting, if not a bit disturbing. I may need to check that one out!

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    1. I wasn’t a fan of Gone Girl, I’ll put a review up of it soon explaining why. It ended up bugging me more than I was impressed with the twist.

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  5. I wish there were places like this where I live! Sadly, almost nothing goes to charity here. It’s sad, really.

    But the books you bought seem interesting! And hey, Wuthering Heights is one of my favorites, too! There’s just something about how real and infuriating Kathy and Heathcliff are… This was actually one of the first books I read in 2010. It took me a few days, but I loved it!

    I’ve read Gone Girl and while it’s certainly twisted and surprising, I didn’t like it a lot. I needed some real reasons; not some selfish little girl’s excuses for screwing everyone around her.

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    1. High five fellow Wuthering Heights fan!

      I was more frustrated by the portrayal of women than the use of a sociopath. Will delve into it more when I (eventually) post my review.

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  6. I just went a bought quite a few scary books for upcoming Halloween (which says a lot about what I will be doing that night). I bought Ghost Story by Peter Straub and Let the Right One In by an author whose name is escaping me.

    I loathed Gone Girl, I’m always happy to find another person who didn’t love it.

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    1. I’ve heard good things about Let the Right One In! Many of my friends love the adaptation as well.

      Let me know how you find the scary books, are you posting a bookish Halloween post?

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      1. I am, I think that’s what I’m going to do the vlog for (assuming I work up the courage). If there’s anything I’m passionate about, it’s dark fiction.

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