How do you choose your next book? How do you choose your next book? How do you choose your next book? I was thinking about this question the other day (& what word to emphasize when I ask it) as I read another enticing review on a blog & realised I had the book on my tbr shelves. The review was of Clerical Errors by D M Greenwood & the blog was Geranium Cat’s Bookshelf. You might ask why I was reading a 5 month old review? Well, I have a Google Alert set up for D E Stevenson & Geranium Cat has just reviewed Miss Buncle’s Book so with one click I was there & I started exploring. That’s how I came across the review of the D M Greenwood, working my way through her old posts. It’s not a new title as I read all the D M Greenwoods when they were first published but they’ve recently been reprinted by Ostara Publishing, who specialize in reprinting clerical mysteries (as well as Oxbridge & medieval mysteries) & I’d bought myself a copy of Clerical Errors some time ago, planning a reread.
Having read Miss Buncle’s Book some time ago, I really should read the sequel, Miss Buncle Married, both books reprinted by Persephone. I’ve read the third book in the series, The Two Mrs Abbotts, by accident as I listened to it on audio & didn’t realise it was part of the series until Mrs Abbott (née Buncle) turned up.
If you have a look at what’s on my tbr table (which is one step closer to actually being read), you’ll see H E Bates’s Fair Stood The Wind For France. I read a review at Reading Matters & was inspired to take it down from its spot on the top tbr shelf where it sits with the other silver spined Penguin Modern Classics. That’s a question for another day. How do you organise the tbr shelves? Alphabetical by author? By subject? By imprint? In the order they came into the house?
Then, a little while ago, Elaine at Random Jottings was rereading Anthony Trollope & she enthused about his Autobiography so down it came too.
Charlotte Brontё’s Shirley is there because I loved rereading Villette so much recently that I want to read Shirley again too.
Sense & Sensibility is there because I’ve just finished rereading it to celebrate the 200th anniversary of its publication. I’ll be posting about it later in the week. Sir Walter Scott’s The Talisman is the latest choice of my 19th century bookgroup. Catherine Carswell’s The Camomile was downloaded (free from Open Library) back in April when I read Desperate Reader’s review here & there’s another enticing review at 20th Century Vox here.
I’ve been reading lots of Scottish history & fiction lately & Mary Stewart’s Stormy Petrel was one of the reprints I bought earlier this year. I downloaded George Orwell’s Homage to Catalonia from my library’s catalogue of e-books so I only have it for a fortnight. I also downloaded David Kynaston’s massive Austerity Britain on the principle that the e-book is easier to read than the 700pp hardback. What was I thinking? I only have two weeks to read both.
I missed reading short stories after reading so many of them last year so I borrowed the new collected stories of Margaret Drabble, A Day in the Life of a Smiling Woman, & I’ve been reading a story a day. I’ve read a few chapters of Margaret Kennedy’s Together & Apart but I’m not sure I’m really in the mood so it may disappear from the tbr table, relegated to the tbr shelves.
So, how do you choose your next book? I love having so many unread books because it often means I have a copy of that book I’ve just read about on one of my favourite blogs & I can get it down straight away & have a look at it. Maybe it goes back to the tbr shelves & maybe it makes it to the tbr table. Of course, my next book might be none of these but something that I haven’t even considered yet. It might be one of the new Stella Gibbons reprints on the way to me from The Book Depository right now. There’s a lovely article on Stella Gibbons here & a review of Westwood here. It might be a book that someone in my online bookgroup raves about. That’s how I discovered The Unbearable Bassington by Saki. Now I think of it, I have Saki’s short stories on the tbr shelves… Maybe I’ll start the Saki stories after the Drabble. At least I will never be in the heart-stopping position of having nothing to read next. Serendipity is a wonderful thing!