Friday, 2 August 2013

Holiday reads

I've always loved choosing which books to take on holiday with me. Visiting the library, scouring the charity shops, and finding forgotten reads on my own bookshelves. Sorting out a big stack; some funny, some classic, some quirky. Plus a few extra for luck, as I don't want to get stuck reading something that turns out to be really dull.

However, those days of lounging by a pool, putting down my book only to go for a swim/eat lunch/choose which drink to have from the pool bar's happy hour cocktail menu are long gone. Despite this, I somehow still have a huge pile of books currently stacked by my bed, waiting to be squeezed into my suitcase. They definitely can't all come on holiday with me, and seeing as I'll probably only read one or two, I need to choose wisely. Perhaps just take 4 or 5. Or 6.

Currently vying for a suitcase place are:

I heard about this ages ago, through various blogs and Twitter, but had never got round the purchasing. I'm so glad I did, as they are full of beautiful photos and illustrations, and lovely words. These are a dead cert to come with me I think.

SALT - Jeremy Page
The Angie Lewin cover attracted me to this book (as you know, I'm a sucker for a good book cover), but it sounds like a good read. The blurb reveals it contains a bit of history, a bit of mystery, some gorgeous descriptions of the Norfolk saltmarshes and a long-running love story. Sounds pretty perfect.

As I was once a teacher of 5&6 year olds, a book called 'The Home Corner' instantly grabbed my attention. Not to mention the beautifully illustrated front cover. It tells the story of a 19 year old, who on failing her Scottish Highers, ends up working in a primary school. This goes on the 'maybe' pile I think. 

I've been trying to read this for a few months now. I'd seen all the hype about it when it was first out, and then spotted it in a local charity shop and thought I'd give it a go. I've read about 30 pages but have no desire to keep going. I really want to finish it though because I've heard such good things about it. Perhaps it'll be a 'maybe'.

THE KITCHEN HOUSE - Kathleen Grissom
I've already mentioned this book before here, and still haven't started reading it. While the cover is lovely, I'm not sure the book is completely up my street. Another 'maybe'.

THE DUD AVOCADO - Elaine Dundy
Yes, yes, another book that's drawn me in by its cover. But this one sounds so good. Reading the first page of the introduction, I knew I had to get it out of the library. Published in the same year as Breakfast at Tiffany's (1958) the book centres around Sally Jay Gorce who (and this is the bit that sold it to me) glumly notes that her clothes divide themselves in three great looks: Tyrolean Peasant, Bar Girl and Dreaded Librarian. This sounds like a really fun book...it's heading suitcase-wards!

Written by the author of The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, this sounds like a magical tale. It follows eight-year-old Noah's adventure as he runs away from home and comes across a toyshop and the toymaker. A quick, easy read for holiday me thinks. 

I've read The Lovely Bones and Lucky by Alice Sebold before, so it was her name that attracted me to this book. It sounds like an intense novel, full of mother/daughter tensions and unresolved conflict. Perhaps not a holiday read, but I'm looking forward to getting stuck in.

I so love Persephone Books. Browsing their catalogue is a lovely way to spend a few minutes, discovering forgotten twentieth centure novels, stories, cookery books and memoirs. Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day is described as an enchanting version of Cinderella. That's good enough for me - in the suitcase it goes.

What's on your must-read pile at the moment? 


  1. I highly recommend Miss Pettigrew Lives For A Day - it's absolutely charming.

    I've also been toying with putting The Home Corner onto my Kindle for my upcoming hols. I survived a PGCE this year and will be teaching Nursery next year so it seems very appropriate.

    Love your blog - words and pictures are both beautiful. x

  2. What a great selection to choose from. Definitely take Lionheart, I took the new issue with me to Scotland and it's fantastic. I think I'll be off to check out some of your recommendations. I'm currently reading and very much enjoying Paper Towns by John Green. Although really aimed at young adults, it's reminiscent of JD Salinger. x

  3. I'm currently on fairy tales and Enid Blyton - bought for my little boy (11 months) but at the end of a long day they're pretty undemanding and short too - nothing like a bit of escapism and revisiting childhood memories at bedtime!

    Your list has got me thinking. I've got a reading wish-list notebook (Paperchase?) which is good as it means I don't forget the 'Must read that one day' titles... I'll add some of those in your list :)


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