The books I didn’t quite get to in 2011

Now that the reading year is coming to a close, I’ve been thinking about the books that I bought this year, usually as a result of enthusiastic reviews & then, by the time they arrived, the moment had passed. I’d moved on & the books made their way to the tbr shelves to await their moment.

After reading Maria Edgeworth’s The Absentee, I was sure I’d go straight on to read more Edgeworth. I’d already been tempted by these lovely new editions of two of her novels, Helen & Patronage by Sort Of Books. But, of course, I didn’t!

I was so enthusiastic about Virginia Woolf after reading Alexandra Harris’s wonderful book Romantic Moderns this time last year that I bought a copy of Between the Acts straight away & haven’t thought about it since. Maybe in 2012?

The Vintage Stella Gibbons reprints caught my eye & I couldn’t wait to get my hands on them. I have read Conference at Cold Comfort Farm & Christmas at Cold Comfort Farm but Westwood is the one everyone is raving about, including Desperate Reader & Stuck In A Book.

Speaking of Simon at Stuck In A Book, one of his books of the year is Shirley Jackson’s Life Among the Savages which I rushed to buy on the strength of his wonderful review. I dipped into it this morning as I was taking the photo of the cover & I think I may read it next. How’s that for a definite commitment? I’ve just finished my umpteenth rereading of Dorothy L Sayers’s Gaudy Night & I’m only one chapter into Dorothy Whipple’s Greenbanks so Shirley may jump in this afternoon as my New Year’s Eve reading.

Constance Maud’s suffragette novel, No Surrender, was reviewed by Desperate Reader & Book Snob. I’m fascinated by the suffragettes but I haven’t got to it yet.

Virginia Nicholson’s new book, Millions Like Us, was eagerly anticipated. I loved her earlier books & this one is about women in WWII. I will definitely get to it soon.

I’ve only discovered Georgette Heyer in the last few years. I read all her mystery novels years ago but her Regency romances left me cold until I read a few of her books with older heroines & I found her wit & incredible grasp of historical detail irresistible. So, I’m looking forward to Jennifer Kloester’s new biography of Heyer, especially after Elaine’s review at Random Jottings.

Dovegreyreader’s Edward Thomas reading trail was fascinating because I’ve always loved Thomas’s poetry & I’ve read his wife Helen’s books about him as well as Eleanor Farjeon’s memoir. So, I had great intentions of reading Matthew Hollis’s new book, Now All Roads Lead To France, during November. But, my Remembrance reading went in another direction & I didn’t get to it.

So, there you have it. My unread books confessions for the year. Of course, there are hundreds more unread books on the tbr shelves but I’m going to try to stop adding to them for a while & enjoy the books I already own. That’s the only New Year reading resolution I’m making. What are your reading resolutions?
Happy New Year from Lucky & Phoebe (that’s a rare photo of them together) & here’s to lots of lovely reading experiences for us all in 2012.

19 thoughts on “The books I didn’t quite get to in 2011

  1. I agree. Lots of my favourite books this year had been sitting on the shelves waiting for the right moment. The right moment always seems to come along. Happy New Year!

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  2. I hate to think of how many books I bought this year that went straight to the shelves even with my good intentions! I do love seeing the books you meant to read, though! I didn't realize that Virginia Nicholson had a new on–another to add to my wishlist. I have Romantic Moderns–unread. I also bought Westwood–I had borrowed it via ILL and read about half of it but it had to go back. I ended up buying it later but have not been able to get back to it to finish! I also want to read the Heyer bio and have No Surrender. There is always next year, right? Have a Happy New Year, Lyn–thanks for a year's worth of great posts!

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  3. I have yet to make my mind up what sort of reading resolutions/challenges I want to do for 2012 – the only one I am sure of which others will no doubt agree with is not buy any more books for a while at least!

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  4. Hi Lyn,
    Have really enjoyed reading your blog over the past week and want to thank you for some wonderful hints and great photos of bookshelves! Looking forward to reading your upcoming reviews. Happy New Year from Israel!
    Kristine

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  5. I have seen my mother buying lot of books for her retirement. She turned 65 in july and died in november…

    With this experience, I must say that I try not to buy books I'm not sure to read, prefering to borrow the ones I'm nost sure about at the library.

    Speaking four languages -french being my usual one, sorry for my mistakes in english!-, temptations are so numerous that I had to do something to keep my sanity!

    May 2012 be a real beautiful year for good reading !

    Happy New Year to you and to yout readers.

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  6. I must add a couple of your titles to my own TBR list, Lyn. Some of your unread books sound very attractive to me.

    I've done the same thing, by the way. Bought a bunch of books (usually used) and then when they arrive they sort of wind up stacked on my TBR piles.

    One Georgette Heyer book (I too am a recent convert) made my Favorites of the Year list this year: THE TALISMAN RING. Have you read that one? It is SUCH a hoot.

    Happy New Year Lyn, I have a good feeling about next year as well. Reading wise and otherwise.

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  7. Diane, I think we're all guilty of over-enthusiasm when it comes to book reviews. But then, it's a harmless vice as vices go. Passing Tramp, I'll look forward to reading your review of the Kloester. I read Heyer's mysteries years ago & would like to reread them one day. Lisa may, ripening is a good term! It makes us sound forward-thinking & well-organised. Dani, next year (this year, now) we have a whole new 365 days to read in. And, if we get to the end of 2012 with unread books on the shelves, well, there's always 2013. I'll look forward to another year of reading your blog, one of my favourites. Jo, I think we all make that resolution & some years it's easier to stick to than others. Fingers crossed for this year. Happy New year Kristine, I'm glad you've enjoyed the year's review. Marie-Josee, I know what you mean. My Mum had lots of things “for best” that she never used so I don't do that with clothes or other things. Books seeem to be different but I try to be optimistic & I do read them just not as fast as I buy them. Thank you Vintage Reading, they say confession is good for the soul & I do hope to read at least a few of these early in the New Year.

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  8. Yvette, I have Talisman Ring on my e-reader & will get to it one day. I'm glad I finally got around to Heyer, I was afraid I was too old to really enjoy her. As long as I avoid the silly young misses, I'm fine!

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  9. What a wonderful idea for a post, Lyn! I wouldn't know where to start with books I intended to read, and lost… So pleased you'll be reading the Jackson soon (maybe!) as I'm sure you'll love it. And it makes me want to start the sequel, Raising Demons.

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  10. As you can imagine Simon, this is only the tip of the iceberg! I'm sorry to say I started Life Among the Savages but found it exhausting & put it down. Maybe because it's so hot, the thought of all that frantic running around with children, laden with parcels, car breaking down etc etc drove me mad. I wanted to give Shirley a good shake & tell her to get a grip, something I never want to do with the Provincial Lady. I may go back & read the rest in winter when I'm feeling more sympathetic.

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  11. I like this post immensely. I have a number of books which I'd been saving for christmas which I didn't get too so I am looking forward to having those as a treatr over the next few weeks. I enjoyed Westwood too immensely nad having been reading some of the Print on Demand Gibbons which have turnedu p in the library. I hadn't come across the Thomas book so shall look out for that. Happy New Year Lyn.

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  12. Thanks Verity. I do want to read the Gibbons soon & I can get the other POD Gibbons titles for my ereader for only about $10 each so I may indulge in a few of those once my New Year's resolution wears off – which it will!

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  13. Marg, this is one of the reasons I vow every January to stop buying books for a while. It hopefully gives me a chance to look again at what I already own. Don't worry, I've bought books at events & had them signed but haven't read them any faster!

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