books and writing

#BookEnds2021: September

How did it go?
Autmn is the best season for reading, no? We still have the longer hours that make rising early easier than in the dead of winter, but we can also start hibernating with lots of blankets and hot drinks.

I am most proud of reading The Little Friend this month – this 500+ page epic was the white whale of this reading challenge. It was, before this month, the book I had picked up the most number of times and still never completed. And I’m so glad I did! When I wasn’t reading this, I was thinking about it and Donna Tartt remains one of my favourites for atmosphere, character and endings.

Also up there for atmosphere was Strange Weather in Tokyo, which hopped in and out of Japanese inns and izakayas, and Annihilation, set in the nightmarish “Area X” where biological boundaries cease to make sense.

Nothing else on this list really grabbed me. It was a little bit of a meh month with a couple stellar stand outs.

Some of the books I read this month: Damned, The Little Friend and Strange Weather in Tokyo

What I read in September 2021

  • Damned, Chuck Palahniuk (on the list)
  • The Little Friend, Donna Tartt (on the list)
  • Annihilation, John Vandermeer (not on the list, borrowed)
  • Beautiful World, Where Are You, Sally Rooney (not on list, bought)
  • Strange Weather in Tokyo, Hiromi Kawakami (on the list)
  • Long Live the Post Horn!, Vigdis Hjorth (not on the list, book group)

Total ticked off the list: 25
Total still to go: 70

Full list here.

However… I also gained the following books in September 2021…

  • Long Live the Post Horn!, Vigdis Hjorth (trans. Charlotte Barslund)
  • The Wind-Up Bird Chronicles, Haruki Murakami
  • The People in the Trees, Hanya Yamagihara
  • Small Bodies of Water, Nina Mingya Powles
  • Hope in the Dark, Rebecca Solnit

Next Up…

Plans for reading: The People in Trees by Hanya Yanagihara, Igifu by Scholastique Mukasonga and Small Bodies of Water by Nina Mingya Powles

I am currently reading The People in the Trees by Hanya Yanagihara – despite being roughly 350 pages, it’s taking me a while to get through. It’s a dense novel which needs you to pay attention! It follows a scientist who journeys to a Micronesian island to investigate claims of immortal life among a small village. It’s a damning look at colonialism and Western science.

This month’s book group book is Igifu by Scholastique Mukasonga, a short story collection about the 1994 genocide in Rwanda.

Both are quite hefty texts, so I am also looking forward to Small Bodies of Water by Nina Mingya Powles, a memoir about water – from migration to open air swimming to fishing and food. I absolutely adored her short book Tiny Moons: A Year of Eating in Shanghai, which was a total comfort read, so I can’t wait to dive (pun intended) into this.

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