Joe Country by Mick Herron.
The Slough House series are my best thriller discovery of the past year. They’re cynical, twisty, tragic, surprising and very funny. Not so much the subject matter – betrayal and death aren’t exactly a hoot – but the writing.
Here’s the appalling Jackson Lamb, head of Slough House, talking to Catherine, one of the team. They’re at a funeral, and not exactly on the same page in terms of respect. Referring to the grieving grandson of the dead man, Lamb says,
‘Wonder if he’ll jump in the grave.’
‘This isn’t Hamlet.’
‘Does that happen in Hamlet?’ said Lamb. ‘I was thinking of Carry On Screaming.’
I’ve nearly finished the series so far…hurry up with the next one please Mick.


The House That Joy Built by Holly Ringland

Windswept by Anabel Abbs

Why Women Grow by Alice Vincent

Collected Short Stories of Katherine Mansfield

The Storied Life of AK Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin
This was a library book group choice.
A top pick from one of our members (the only male); it’s taken us months to get it in, so it must be word-of-mouth demand.
A good book club title. For once, we all loved it. Heartwarming but not icky, funny, surprising, characters you don’t want to let go. About books and publishing and writers. Little rural bookshops. Complicated lives, tragedies, all kinds of love and an adopted baby.
I’m full of admiration when writers can tackle potentially heavy subjects with a light touch that nonetheless doesn’t trivialise. Gorgeous.

Last month I also borrowed big illustrated books on native plants, roses, gardening, travel and bread making. I read bits and pieces of text, but mainly just looked at the pictures. Best of all was this one, The Art of the Tea Towel by Marnie Fogg (great name for a children’s book heroine, a pity it’s taken). Tea towels! Yay! Joyous and bright and cheery. Who would have thought there’d be a whole book on tea towel design? My sister-in-law used to work as a designer for a firm that printed Australiana tea towels. Lots of cute and cuddly animals, pretty fish, shells and coral, and wildflowers.  Occasionally she’d try to sneak something not-so-cute, like a shark or a snake. They always noticed.


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One Response to MARCH READING

  1. Kate c says:

    Gabrielle Zevin wrote Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow (can’t remember if you’ve read this or not — maybe it was you who recommended it??), which was one of my favourite reads of last year. Good to hear there’s more to uncover from her.

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