That don’t impress me much

Don’t get me wrong, yeah I think you’re all right,
But that won’t keep me warm in the middle of the night.

Sorry.

I knew my day job would infiltrate my blog eventually. You’re obviously thinking I’m some sort of cool music act reviving the 90s, alas no, I send emails for a living. Song titles make good subject lines, and hopefully, post titles.

How is this relevant to reading?

As I make my way through the Baileys shortlist, impressions have been on my mind. Last year the shortlist blew me away, and while the books on this year’s are clearly marvellous, they’re not doing much for me. So far I’ve read The Paying Guests, A Spool of Blue Thread and A God in Every Stone . I didn’t hate them or feel they were badly written; A Spool of Blue Thread came the closest to moving me, but I couldn’t say that I’ll be thinking about it much now it’s read.

The more I read the harder I am to impress.

Books aren’t getting worse, we’re not running out of ideas, I’m finding it harder to top the best books I’ve read. Slaughterhouse-Five, Parade’s End, The Secret History, Cloud Atlas, Slouching Towards Bethlehem, Mansfield Park, Persuasion, The Bookshop, Offshore, The Reader, The Easter Parade, A Song of Ice and Fire series, Just Kids…. nothing quite matches them. Reading has become a drug and I keep reading in need of the next intellectual fix.

Sadly, thus far the Bailey’s list hasn’t managed to meet this challenge, and it makes me disappointed in myself.

Do you ever have this problem? Could you recommend me my next big read?

P.s. I promise not to make a habit of the songs, it’s the delirium.

19 thoughts on “That don’t impress me much

  1. I’m afraid I don’t pay much attention to official lists or awards. I rely on recommendations, and favourite authors and genres. I hope you find something that really catches your imagination soon.

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  2. Am so reassured by your ‘reading = a drug’ comment. I’m feeling like that more and more these days and see less and less 4 and 5 stars on my Goodreads page…. Wasn’t a massive fan of Cloud Atlas however I have to say!

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    1. I’m hoping it will pass soon. I think I’ve got a bit consumed with having to read a certain amount of books and not having time, and it’s the wrong way to be thinking about reading.

      I’m not even sure what I’m in the mood for. I’ve got Greensleeves sitting on my shelf, but I’m worried about starting it in case my strange reading head contaminates my enjoyment of it.

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  3. That would be difficult. I guess the hard part is that the books that really connect with us don’t come along all the time, and it can depend on where we are mentally and emotionally at the time as well. There kind of has to be an alignment of the stars and words. xD

    I do hope you can find another book that you really like soon!

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  4. You’re right! There isn’t too many books out there that are worth reading/connecting too and I feel you about that. One day, we’ll have that connection again. I started singing that song as soon as I read your title. It’s stuck in my head now. Lol Anyhow, I hope we find books again that worth reading and engrossing in.

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  5. The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver stayed with me. I sometimes wonder if I read too much or too quickly so don’t really appreciate what I’m reading.

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  6. So glad you’re a fellow The Secret History lover! Other books which are on my “cannot beat” list include The Robber Bride by Margaret Atwood, and Possession by A. S. Byatt. You may like those as well.

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    1. I shall keep a note of them for when I next buy some books!

      I read TSH way back before I loved reading, and it’s something I still remember now and then as a wonderful read. It’s one that will stay with me for sure.

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  7. Love the drug analogy. It’s so true. I give a lot of four star rating, because I can see that the book is “good,” but it’s just not hitting the spot… lately I’ve been asking people IRL for recommendations, to get away from the same ol’ award lists and books going around the blogosphere, but no 5 star reads yet!

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